Electrical Fire Leaves Some Sunset Park Residents Without Power Amid Brutal Heat

NY 1 - July 04, 2018

by Ruschell Boone

A light pole bursting into flames Monday and popping electrical wires was enough to send people scrambling to safety on 41st St. and 9th Ave. in Sunset Park.

"It was like a war in here," one witness described. "Boom, boom, boom, boom with all the cables sparking and — boom — fire."

"The spot right here, there were like four or five people," another witness said near the scene. "The guy from Con Edison, he was running from there he was saying, 'Get out! Get out!' So everybody was running in that direction."

Luckily, no one was injured. Con Edison said a smoking manhole led to the blaze, which left dozens of customers without power. The agency said it happened around 4 p.m. and was related to the high temperatures in the city Monday.

"My dad is actually trying to turn on the lantern but nothing works here," one woman said in her apartment.

The power outage left people struggling to stay cool on one of the hottest days so far this year.

"I don't know, but we'll figure it out," one woman said. "Perhaps, I'll open up my balcony door and we'll be safe and sound and there will be some nice natural air coming from Mother Nature."

For some customers, it was only a partial loss of power. "We are all here to help each other and to cook the food if the refrigerator is not on," one local resident said.

Con Edison workers were on the scene around 10 p.m., trying to move as quickly as they could to restore power to the people on 41st St.

But it has been a difficult evening for the residents, as many buildings on the street were in the dark. Some residents, trying to stay cool, took to sitting outside.

Con Edison said Monday night that there are about 50 customers without power. The agency is hoping to restore power by 3 a.m.

Some affected residents said if that is the case, they can handle it, but if it takes longer it will be extremely difficult.