The power was out Saturday, July 27, for about two hours due to the mayfly hatch which caused problems the Minnesota Power hydro plant in Little Falls.

About 1,400 residents were affected, including the majority of those in west Little Falls to the area by North End Park.

Dean Erdman of Little Falls, a lineman with Minnesota Power, said the mayflies covered an insulator, shorting it out and causing the power outage.

“It was a right amount of mayflies in the right space,” Erdman said.

Years ago, Erdman said it used to happen a couple of times a year. Back then, the lights were left on at the hydro plant, which attracts the mayflies.

In the mid-1990s, it was decided not to turn the lights on at night, so as not to attract the mayflies. A power outage due to mayflies has not been a common occurrence since, Erdman said.

Before the Minnesota Power crews could go out, a hydro crew had to first come out to ensure everything was safe.

The mayflies were 2 feet deep on the Mississippi River bridge, Erdman said.

The linemen first cleaned the mayflies off the equipment and then re-energize it. Power was restored at about 12:48 a.m., July 28.

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