Sullivan County Director of Schools David Cox said the outage occurred because of a lightning strike to a transformer about 6:10 a.m., after buses already were on the road to school. Students arrived at both schools, he said, and for a while AEP officials told school officials they thought the power could be restored. South football players were on hand as planned at Rock Springs to meet elementary students Friday morning.
However, Cox said the large transformer at the school, feed by power lines that go through woods behind the schools, has to be replaced and that the estimated arrival of the new transformer from Roanoke, Virginia, would be 6 p.m., with power restored about midnight or 1 a.m.
“We had a lightning strike to a transformer,” Cox said Friday afternoon. “The power supply to the stadium is separate.”