How many times have you watched a squirrel walk across a power line without getting hurt? I used to think it was kind of cool to watch them as they performed high above on dangerous power lines.

According to the Lansing State Journal, squirrels and other animals were the most frequent cause of overhead power outages last year.

Birds were occasionally the culprits, but the general manager of BWL estimated squirrels triggered at least 90 percent of animal related incidents.

So what exactly happens when a squirrel causes a power outage?

Problems arise if a squirrel touches a transformer and a power line at the same time, inadvertently becoming a conductor of electricity.

So basically the result is a short circuit with a side of fried squirrel.

Critters have surpassed trees as the BWL's number one contributor to overhead outages, which are outages involving above ground equipment.

Oh great, so every time we lose power from now on in the Okemos area, I'll be thinking to myself, there goes another squirrel!

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