Empire District Electric Co. was trying Thursday night to determine what caused a midafternoon power outage that affected about 1,500 customers on Joplin’s south side.

The outage began about 3:30 p.m., and affected customers from 32nd Street south to the low-water bridge on Shoal Creek, and from Pearl Avenue on the west to Indiana Avenue on the east, according to Julie Maus, a spokeswoman for Empire.

Maus said power was restored to all customers briefly about 4 p.m. but went back out minutes later. Some customers saw it restored for a second time by about 4:35 p.m., she said. But about 1,000 customers remained without power until 7:25 p.m., when all customers were restored, she said.

“It just wasn’t apparent what caused it initially,” Maus said.

She said company employees who rerouted the load to get all customers back on line suspected that an equipment issue may have been involved.

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