NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Power problems were spread around the area as the heat soared into the mid-90s for a second day Wednesday, and Con Edison said many factors – including damage dating back to the winter – are to blame.
Problems were widespread Wednesday. Con Ed reported hundreds of power outages in the Crown Heights and Prospect Park sections of Brooklyn, the Flushing and Jamaica sections of Queens and the Chinatown section of Manhattan.READ MORE: New York Weather: CBS2’s 12/1 Wednesday Morning Forecast
In the midday hours, Con Edison reported 1,144 power outages in Brooklyn alone.
Meanwhile in Ossining, a 13,000-volt feeder cable sizzled through the pavement and caused a fire in the street at the Old Albany Post Road and Route 9A in Ossining as power demand hit its peak, CBS2’s Lou Young reported.
Con Edison crews rushed to kill the juice to the burning feeder cable as firefighters watched in awe and listened to the crackling flames of the energy demand on a hot day.
The power problems were the result of underground cables quit under the strain. CBS2’s Young wondered why it is always a surprise.
“A lot of times, you’ll have damage during the winter that materializes in the summer when those electrical cables are really tested,” said Con Edison spokesman Mike Clendenin.READ MORE: NYCFC Reaches Eastern Conference Final After Penalty Shootout
Factors that lead to summer blackouts include heat and humidity, huge fluctuations in power demand, and damage from severe winters – and the Con Ed service area has had all three.
And although sights such as electrical fires in the middle of the street get our attention, Con Ed said it most worried about underground wires.
Con Ed also noted that for heat resistance, cities with constantly hot temperatures and mild winters tend to have a leg up.
“In Miami and other places, they have a lot of overhead,” Clendenin said. “They’re more susceptible to storms, but not as much to the heat.”
But overhead lines have their own problems, as Stella Beqi of Yonkers found out. She was running the air conditioner when the power cut out and she was left sweating in the dark.
“I have central air in the house, so that was on, but it was 90 degrees today, so I had to. I have to kids inside,” Beqi said. “It just went off. Everything went off. The lights – everything shut down.”MORE NEWS: Nets Edge Knicks On James Johnson's Free Throws
The sizzling line in Ossining left about 600 customers without power. It was expected to be repaired Wednesday evening.