According to a federal memo, in recent weeks, at least five attacks at electricity substations in the Pacific Northwest have been reported to the FBI. This is in addition to the attack in Moore County.
There was a call for attacks on critical infrastructure by domestic terrorists.
The Department of Homeland Security warned earlier this year that domestic extremists have been developing plans to target the US power grid since 2020.
The report arrives days after a significant outage was caused by a targeted substation attack in Moore County, North Carolina. Forty Thousand people were without power for days.
More reports of gunfire, this time near a South Carolina hydro station, were reported Wednesday night.
Washington and Oregon Substations
In Washington state and Oregon, spokespeople for several energy companies – Puget Sound Energy, the Cowlitz County Public Utilities District, and Bonneville Power Administration – confirmed the attacks occurred in November.
The FBI is investigating a targeted attack on a Portland General Electric substation in late November, the utility confirmed.
“PGE is aware of a deliberate physical attack on one of our substations in the Clackamas area,” wrote a PGE spokesperson in a statement. “Our teams have assessed the damage and begun repair to the impact facility.”
A federal law enforcement memo revealed that the Pacific Northwest substations have described attacks and weapons used. They had “hand tools, arson, firearms, and metal chains. The attacks were possibly in response to an online call for attacks on critical infrastructure.”
“In recent attacks, criminal actors bypassed security fences by cutting the fence links, lighting nearby fires, shooting equipment from a distance, or throwing objects over the fence and onto equipment,” read the memo.
KOIN, a CBS News affiliate in Portland, reported that FBI agents said it’s possible the vandalism was a “response to an online call for attacks on critical infrastructure.”
Moore County Substation
The biggest attack recently has been in Moore County, N.C. Two substations were targeted, causing roughly 40,000 people to lose power Saturday. The FBI is warning our region’s power companies about online postings. The postings ask people to attack infrastructure across the country.
Many North Carolinians impacted are just recently getting their power back on. Currently, law enforcement believes these attacks were intentional.