AEP officials are investigating what caused the power outage that shut off service to more than 1,800 customers in northwest Columbus.
The outage happened just before 6:45 a.m. near the intersection of Bethel and Godown Roads.
Columbus police officers directed rush-hour drivers as traffic signals became four-way stops.
Light smoke and flames curled out of a power pole at a nearby apartment complex parking lot.
The outage occurred as buses, staff and students arrived at Centennial High School on Bethel Road.
Columbus City School officials dismissed students early, but soon reversed that decision.
The school reopened after crews restored service by 8:00 a.m.