MENLO PARK (KRON) – A squirrel almost ruined Christmas for one Menlo Park family Sunday morning.
Around 6:17 a.m. the Public Safety Communications received a call from a neighbor that a home on San Mateo Drive had smoke coming from the roof.
Once fire crews arrived at the scene around 6:22 a.m. they found heavy black smoke was coming from the large single story home.
Upon further investigation, they found a fire burning around the door casing of the front door of the home, fire officials said.
Crews were able to contain the blaze by 6:32 a.m. Pacific Gas and Electric crews were also called to the scene.
The crew from PG&E found that a squirrel had chewed through the neutral wire at the nearby power pole, and that line had then dropped down onto the power line to the home, potentially frying the homes electrical system and essentially energizing the entire home.
According to Fire Chief Harold Schapelhouman, “this isn’t the first time we’ve had a squirrel cause power problems in Menlo Park.”
In 2016, one bit into a power line and a transformer exploded, resulting in power loss to the downtown area.