by Mark Steil, Minnesota Public Radio
WORTHINGTON, Minn. -- Power may be out until Sunday evening in a four-block area of downtown Sioux Falls, S.D., after a fire damaged an underground electrical transformer.
The fire early Friday morning cut off power to several hundred customers. Xcel Energy says manhole covers were blown off and a sidewalk buckled in the fire.
"There's an underground transformer fire in the downtown area of Sioux Falls," said Sioux Falls emergency manager Regan Smith. "And subsequently there was a loss of electricity in the downtown area, probably to about 200 customers."
Smith said that many commercial buildings in that area of downtown have apartments or lofts on their upper floors, adding that those people have had to leave their buildings.
"The Red Cross has opened up shelter for those displaced residents," Smith said.
Xcel crews from the Twin Cities have been called in to help restore power. No injuries were reported in the incident.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.