Power has been restored to all 2,100 PG&E customers in San Francisco's Chinatown and North Beach neighborhoods this afternoon after an underground power cable failed and a manhole exploded earlier today, a utility spokesman said.
Around 11:30 a.m., a manhole exploded in the 600 block of Bush Street near Stockton Street, PG&E spokesman Joe Molica said.
The manhole cover flew off, striking a vehicle, police and fire officials said.
An employee at the nearby Moth and Dagger Tattoo Studio at 610 Bush St. said the cover was blown about 4 feet into the air.
It struck a passing vehicle and dented the trunk, he said.
He said flames and smoke were seen coming from the exposed manhole.
The employee said down the block, it appeared another manhole cover had also come off.
Smoke from the area indicated damage to an underground electrical cable, Molica said.
He said, "We know a power cable failed but we don't know why."
Power was restored to all customers at 1:49 p.m., Molica said. He said crews remained on scene this afternoon to investigate the incident.
San Francisco Municipal Railway cable car service was briefly stopped after the explosion but was able to continue unaffected, Muni spokesman Paul Rose said.
Copyright © 2013 by Bay City News, Inc. Republication, re-transmission or reuse without the express written consent of Bay City News, Inc. is prohibited.