Damaged equipment to blame for massive Dyker Heights power outage

July 11, 2018 Meaghan McGoldrick
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A massive power outage in Dyker Heights that left residents without electricity for a portion of the afternoon on Monday, July 9 is being blamed on equipment damage.

According to Con Edison, more than 6,000 customers were affected by the outage, for which the company originally gave an estimated restoration time of 4:30 p.m.

However, with crews working hard and fast, power was deemed officially restored by 2:04 p.m.

Power started going out across the neighborhood just before 1 p.m. Monday with Con Edison originally deeming the cause an “equipment failure.” With traffic lights out across the neighborhood, the NYPD called in a Level 1 Mobilization to address the outages and help direct traffic.

Sidney Alvarez, media relations manager for Con Edison, told this paper that the outage is still under formal investigation. Large-scale outages of this kind, he said, are investigated thoroughly — affected cables going to a place Alvarez referred to as the “cable morgue” — and could take a long time.

However, a preliminary investigation chalked the outage up to a mishap during scheduled work, Alvarez said.

“I do know that we were doing some scheduled work out there, just some regular maintenance and updates, and one of our crew members damaged part of our equipment, which caused it to fail,” he told this paper. “That’s what caused the outage in very general terms.”

Reason aside, local electeds are applauding Con Edison for its swift handling of the situation. Also lauded was Captain Robert Conwell and the 68th Precinct, for helping keep residents safe during the outage.

“I gotta say ConEd and the 68 really did a great job with this one,” said Councilmember Justin Brannan. “We were in constant communication from start to finish and we were able to get folks back up and running fairly quickly and thankfully without any real incidents. We were also fortunate the outage didn’t happen at night as well.”

“I thank all the people who reached out to my office immediately when they lost power,” said State Sen. Marty Golden. “My staff and I were in communication with senior Con Edison officials and we also provided important safety tips during the outage. I commend Con Edison for their immediate response and for quick restoration of power for the more than 6,000 Dyker Heights residents who were affected.”

Outages were reported from blocks in the low 70’s to the mid-80’s between 10th and 13th Avenues. In addition, traffic lights were said to be out along 75th Street and 12th Avenue.

Flickering lights were also reported in Bay Ridge.

During the outage, Golden’s office urged residents to take precaution by unplugging televisions and computers to prevent damage to equipment, using flashlights instead of candles, turning off light switches and keeping fridges and freezer doors closed.

When power is restored, Golden’s aide John Quaglione reminded, it’s best to reconnect electronics one at a time.

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