Priest Rapids Dam experiences second fire in one of its exciter units

Priest Rapids

PRIEST RAPIDS DAM — A small early-morning fire broke out Monday in a component at Priest Rapids Dam — the second such component to catch fire at the hydropower facility.

The blaze broke out shortly after 1 a.m. in an exciter, a piece of equipment that provides startup energy to one of the dam’s generating units. The Grant County PUD says operators quickly extinguished the fire, which was similar to a fire that broke out in another exciter unit Oct. 3.

Dam technicians have increased their monitoring and reduced the number of startup cycles while the fire is under investigation. The PUD says power generation and water flow are not affected.