Co-Op City power outage traps six

AM New York - October 05, 2006

by Chuck Bennett

Firefighters rescued six people trapped in elevators in Co-Op City Wednesday morning after a large portion of the complex lost power, FDNY said.

The power outage at the Bronx housing complex occurred at 10:17 a.m. when a steam pipe burst and caused a nearby circuit breaker to go into safety mode and shut down. Eight buildings were without power for 20 minutes to an hour.

"It's not a power failure. The system just went into safety mode," said Joe Boiko, the liaison between Co-Op City management and apartment owners.

About 60 firefighters responded to initial reports of a fire. They found six people, including three employees of RiverBay Corp., the management company, trapped in three elevator cars.

"We got through it relatively easy," Boiko said.

The problem was not attributed to Con Edison. As early as next year, Boiko said, Co-Op City will rebuild its own power plant and generate electricity for its 50,000 residents.