In what is being described as a very "Canadian problem", beavers in a town in Saskatchewan caused a blackout for an hour on Sunday (29 October) after chewing on a power pole.

The incident took place in the city of Prince Albert. The beavers apparently chewed the base of the pole, making it unstable. Strong winds in the area later knocked the pole over, plunging the town as well as a large region of northern Saskatchewan into darkness.

SaskPower, the principal electric utility in Saskatchewan, Canada is calling this a very Canadian problem.

"This was one of our larger wooden power poles and there was ample evidence of beaver damage at the base of it, so beavers had been chewing away at it," Jonathan Tremblay, a spokesperson told the CBC news website.
"It was a bit of a domino effect."

More than 3,500 people were affected by the power outage, the Prince Albert Daily Herald reported.

Animals account to roughly one-third of the power outages experienced by SaskPower customers. However, it's not always beavers that cause the trouble.

"Usually, it's birds flying into substations, or squirrels chewing at things they shouldn't," Tremblay said. "Beavers are fairly rare."

Earlier in May, the Crown utility had to repair another line in Saskatchewan after beavers had gnawed through a pole in the southwest. The incident occurred when a wedding was taking place in the area. But the festivities went on, despite the lack of light.

"We think it was a blessing," the bride had told CTV news website. "A Canadian beaver blessed our wedding, so it makes it extra special."

According to CBC website, beavers are more active during this time of the year.