The power cut that left thousands of Moray homes in the dark and forced shops and schools in Lossiemouth to close their doors for the day was caused by a bird strike.
All three schools in Lossiemouth were also forced to send pupils home after the power failed at 8.15am on Monday morning – while it was back on after five minutes it was off again by 9.10am and this time the outage remained for much of the morning.
Around 3500 homes and business were affected with many people struggling to stay warm on what was one of the coldest days of the year.
Scottish Southern Energy (SSE) reported that it was a strike by migrating birds on their power lines that caused the power cut.
A spokesman said: “We would like to apologise to all those affected by the disruption.”
A Moray Council spokesman sad that the decision to send pupils home was unavoidable, adding that while power was restored before lunchtime there was no way of knowing that earlier – and in any case it would have taken some time for heating systems to restore normal temperatures.
Thousands of migrating Geese and Swans are currently using Moray as a ‘stopping off’ point and one insideMoray reader reported her mother having seen the bird strike that may have contributed to the problem.
Ann Hay told readers on the insideMoray Facebook page: “My mum Maureen Reid witnessed swans flying into electricity cables on the Lossie to Elgin road near the Muirton junction. There was a loud bang and a flash – she called the Scottish SPCA.”