BREAKING NEWS: Power outage in NYC

Supposedly not a big area, but it seems to have hit Radio City, Broadway, and Lincoln Center among other places.

Just pay for the cable, Jamie!

[li]The lights go out on Broadway.[/li][li]Times Square goes dark[/li][li]Penn Station w/o power. LIRR & NJT trains down. ALL midtown subways either delayed or down. [/li][li]J Lo concert cxl’d/postponed[/li][li]Elevator rescues[/li][li]77,000 customers affected [/li][/ul]

Affecting about 30 blocks affected after a major transformer fire…
…on the EXACT ANNIVERSARY of thr 1977 blackout!!! :eek:
I made it out. (Thanks PATH!)

I remember the '77 blackout; it was insane.

My daughter was attending a play, which got cancelled. Luckily they drove and were pointing the right way (they found a free spot ! )
Latest news I heard was that the power was back except for one net, and that was a while ago.

NYC’s crumbling third-world infrastructure continues to be a worldwide embarrassment. What a surprise.

im wondering if it wasnt intentional seeing the date it happened on…

You do realize it was a fire that started it?

I’ve seen the lights go out on Broadway…

It was a transformer fire.

I haven’t seen any details about exactly what type of transformer it was or what caused the fire. It may take a while for them to figure that out conclusively. So everything from here on out is pure speculation on my part.

I’m assuming we are talking about a substation transformer here, not some little line mounted transformer. In any event, transformer fires can be caused by many different things. A suicidal squirrel for example managed to take out power to about half of the small town I live in. Critters accidentally shorting out transformers are a major nuisance in power systems.

Another major cause of transformer fires though is exactly what friedo said, crumbling infrastructure. Old, neglected transformers can have their insulation dry out and crumble, leading to failure. Large substation transformers are filled with oil, and the transformer case can rust and develop a leak as it gets old. When enough oil leaks out, boom! If it wasn’t a critter that took the transformer out, then it was likely a lack of maintenance that caused the transformer to eventually fail. Transformers have a fairly lengthy lifespan, but it still has its limits, and transformers are supposed to be replaced when they get near the end of that lifespan so that they won’t fall apart and go kablooey. A big city like New York will often skimp a bit on the maintenance just to save on costs, and may not inspect and replace their old transformers anywhere near as often as they should.

There are other causes as well, though I did see that they had ruled out intentional sabotage at this point. Without any further details, critters and neglect are probably the two most likely causes (IMHO).

I’ve seen enough movies to know that it was part of a heist going on. Biiiiiig heist…

Optimus Prime must’ve gotten fed up with traffic…

You do realize that properly maintained electrical distribution systems have fire suppression and proper maintenance to prevent infiltration of stray trash and animals, right? “It caught on fire” is the reason - it is not an acceptable reason. These things aren’t supposed to burst into flames when they are handled correctly. Power distribution infrastructure is supposed to have very near 100% uptime guarantees, thanks to maintenance and redundancy. This wasn’t a once-in-a-lifetime cascade of fails like the 2003 blackout (not that that was acceptable, but it was far harder to predict.)

Look, I lived in NYC for a very long time. There are a lot of reasons, both personal and professional, why I chose to leave this year, and the inability of New York to address its infrastructure problems in order to make the city actually livable was a significant factor. When you have that level of corruption, incompetence and apathy at the all levels of the state and city government, who are willing to constantly sacrifice safety and sound engineering practice for political expediency, you end up with shit like easily-preventable transformer fires, a transit system that doesn’t work and has no fix in sight, roads that are un-drivable and a menace to pedestrians and cyclists, and billions of dollars wasted on botched broad-band and utility rollouts that will never happen because the utilities won’t do their jobs, and the people who are supposed to make them do it won’t.

We get power outages several times a year in Little Rock. It usually hits several areas of the city. Entergy provides a outage map on their web site for the entire state

I’m surprised NY doesn’t have more outages. Does the National press report outages in the Boroughs?

I was also wondering why a power outage would be considered “BREAKING NEWS”. Although rare, they are not unheard of just about anywhere as far as I know. If the people of NYC feel that a power failure is “BREAKING NEWS”, perhaps they need to invest in emergency generators…

I’d say just the fact that Times Square, Broadway, and Lincoln center all went dark merited at least a breaking new break-in, although not the mass hysteria the cable news stations presented.

I was switching channels last night. CNN and MSNBC dropped their usual Saturday night filler material and did hours of live coverage. Fox News did the same, but at least they noted once or twice an hour, “Hey, there’s also a crapload of rain hitting Louisiana. Here’s an update on that.”

I don’t want to live in NYC, but just how responsible should government be held when a privately owned power company drags its feet on the infrastructure it owns?

I was living in NYC during the '65 and '77 blackouts.

At least this time there was no rioting, looting and many fires set, like in '77. It’s a very different city now.

Utility companies are publicly regulated. The government sets the operating standards and the billing rates, and it’s the government’s job, through the utilities commission, to enforce said standards. They won’t do it.

Exactly what I was thinking. Has the Times sent a reporter around to Tiffany’s?

First, let me state that “BREAKING NEWS” is used far too often & for stuff that, IMHO, doesn’t really deserve that title. Last week, we had a “BREAKING NEWS” alert for a protest march. :rolleyes:

That being said, 73,000 customers in an outage not caused by weather is a large outage, especially when you consider that many of those customers are or are in high rise buildings, including many hotels & commercial entities like restaurants & retail/souvenir shops in a big tourist area so the actual number of people impacted is much higher. It also affected three separate transit agencies: LIRR, MTA, & NJT.

Has Times Square gone dark other than 1977, 2003, & last night?