.

Reston Transformer Explosion Snarls Traffic, Cuts Power on Sunset Hills

Officials: Fire caused lots of smoke, but little damage.

Smoke from transformer fire in Reston Tuesday  Credit: Bryan Crum
Smoke from transformer fire in Reston Tuesday Credit: Bryan Crum
One Dominion Virginia Power employee suffered minor injuries after a transformer explosion caused a fire at Sunset Hills Road and Reston Parkway on Tuesday morning.

Fairfax County Fire and Rescue crews were called to 11800 Sunset Hills (Carlton House Condos) about 8:30 a.m. said Chief Bob Zoldos.

Officials do not yet know why the transformer exploded, but it caused a small fire and thick black smoke that could be seen several miles away. The smoke at one point reached seven stories high, but quickly died down.

The condo building was briefly evacuated, said Zoldos, but residents were allowed back in when it was determined that the fire had not spread to the residences.

As of 9:30 a.m. power and traffic lights were out in places along Sunset Hills between Reston Parkway and Plaza America Shopping Center. Traffic is backed up, but Zoldos said he hopes the scene will be cleared by 10 a.m.


Laurie Dodd September 24, 2013 at 10:53 AM
It is so good to get timely information on local events via Patch! Thanks.
Lugo September 24, 2013 at 11:14 AM
Took two hours to get to work this morning. I don't feel all that much better now that I know why...
Sara Polton September 24, 2013 at 04:30 PM
I was in the building when it happened. My power was going bonkers. I hiked 12 floors down (lest I get stuck again in the elevator). I found a very frighten women with her dog in the stair well with out her keys talking about a big fire. They building said the power might be back on at midnight. Say goodbye to my groceries. I'm going to try to save my poor fish!
Karen Goff September 24, 2013 at 04:42 PM
Sara - Yikes. I hope the power returns soon and the fish is ok!
Keith A. September 24, 2013 at 06:49 PM
Why did you guys remove the photo that showed the actual explosion?! That was a really good, high quality photo...
Karen Goff September 24, 2013 at 08:05 PM
Keith - We couldn't verify who took the original and there was some question as to whether it had been doctored. So we took it down. But if we get verification, we will put it back up.
Keith A. September 24, 2013 at 09:22 PM
Yeah... Taking another look at it, I have to admit that it falls under the heading of suspicious...
Mikey Tate September 25, 2013 at 10:56 PM
When I past by the apartments last night just before 8pm, the folks there were still out, but the construction crew were still on it! Tonight, things are back to normal. :) Luckily, I didn't feel or hear it from the South Lakes area. XD
Steve Sharp September 26, 2013 at 07:59 PM
I worked this transformer after it exploded and yes the fire ball did reach the top of building. thank god my co-workers were ok with only very minor injuries compared to what could have happened. power was restored that night! Still trying to figure out cause of the problem with the transformer.

Boards

More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »