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Queens Residents Powerless After Utility Pole Collapse

(Photo/CBS 2)

(Photo/CBS 2)

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NEW YORK (CBS 2) — There was shock on 157th Street as an entire row of utility poles dropped without warning around 12:30 p.m. Tuesday in Springfield Gardens.

Five poles in total came down with one of them falling on a UPS truck and two others were left bent and leaning.

“Bang. Just like that. I look outside and I see all the wires are down,” Dorothy Kidd told CBS 2’s Lou Young.

An inspection of the affected poles revealed something seriously wrong — a fire department source told CBS 2 termites may be to blame.

About 60 Homes on the block and businesses in a nearby industrial park were left in the dark. Workers were also sent home.

“We were in our office and we just heard like popping like the electric started to pop on and off and then it went out,” Calogera Mahoney said.

Janet Moncrieffe was getting ready to vote and head to work when a tree crashed down onto her car.

“It’s totaled. I don’t know what to do because I have to get to and from work,” Moncrieffe said.

Con Edison was able to cut the sparking wires before further damage was caused to Moncrieffe’s car. Initially, there was concern that oil spilling from several toppled transformers might be toxic, but that no longer appeared to be a concern.

But as always the central question remained: when will the lights come back on?

Chrstina Arzuaga said she was told residents affected in Springfield Gardens would be without power for four days.

Officially, Con Ed hasn’t said what was wrong with the poles as they worked to replace the the fallen ones and shore up those that were teetering.