Hundreds Left in Dark, Cold in Queens after Manhole Fire Knocks Out Power: FDNY

WNBC 4 - January 30, 2019

Hundreds of apartments in Queens went dark and cold late Monday after something sparked a manhole fire.

Con Edison and FDNY crews remained on the scene in Flushing early Tuesday after a manhole went up in flames at around 10:30 p.m. Monday in the area of Cherry Avenue and Colden Street, knocking the power out at two high-rise apartment buildings, affecting nearly 600 apartments.

Officials say along with utility cables damaged, firefighters detected high carbon monoxide levels, forcing some people to flee their homes because of safety concerns. Some were seen huddling in the lobby of a nearby building trying to stay warm on the cold January night.

Con Ed said they hoped to have the power restored sometime Tuesday morning. The utility company then said power had been restored at one of the buildings around 5:30 a.m., but the other remained in the dark.

It’s not yet clear what may have caused the manhole to go up in smoke.