Vandals cause outage for 6,000 Clay Electric customers

Vandals knock out power for 6000+

CLAY COUNTY, Fla. — Thousands of families woke up without power in Clay County on Saturday after Clay Electric says vandals broke into two substations.

Darren Baker said his power went out right as he was putting his newborn daughter to bed.

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“I made the baby a bottle and was about to lay down and watch a movie," he said. "As soon as I laid down, the lights went out."

A few streets over in Clay Hill, Karri Hill and her four kids woke up to the outage.

“We’re used to waking up once in a while without power because there’s a storm or whatnot so I didn’t think about it being vandalism,” Hill said.

Clay Electric told Action News Jax that vandals broke into its Maxville and Lake Asbury substations overnight.

They damaged transformers, causing more than 6,000 customers to lose power around 4 a.m.

Clay Electric said power was restored to most customers by 6 a.m. but some were without power until 9 a.m.
Action News Jax asked a spokesperson if they believe the substations were targeted. They said they couldn't go into detail about the damage for security reasons.

"This is the first time I've ever heard of this kind of thing happening," Hill said. "I hope that they have at least some sort of security cameras to see what happened."
The Clay County Sheriff's Office told Action News Jax that it warned other power companies in the area.

“They had to know what they were doing to go in there,” Baker said. “Electricity isn’t nothing to play with. It can kill you.”

Clay Electric confirmed it's reviewing security measures at the substations.

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