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Con Edison says, "Electric Arc" became blue in New York City at night



ASTORIA, Queens (WABC) –

Con Edison says an electrical fault at a substation in Astoria, Queens, has caused an electric arc on Thursday night lighting up the skies over New York City as it has some delays and delays scattered performance causes failures.

It happened just after 9 pm Con Edison Plant in Astoria East and North Queens on 20th Avenue and 32nd Street in Astoria.

Initially thought of as a transformer explosion, Con Ed made a statement on Friday morning explaining what had happened:

"An electrical fault A section of 138,000 volt devices in one of our Astoria substations caused a transmission disturbance and a permanent arc that caused the blue light that was being observed by humans.The faulty devices are related to the voltage monitoring in the substation. "

An electric circuit arc is defined as" a visible plasma discharge between two Electrodes caused by ionizing gases in the air. " Arcs occur in nature in the form of lightning.

The device whose malfunction is supposed to monitor the voltage somehow got damaged and let this voltage escape.

Within minutes of the incident, the fire department officials announced this Numerous calls for reports of explosions in the areas of Long Island City and Astoria.

Despite these initial reports, Con Ed stated that there had been no explosion and no electric fire. Any fire had leaked before the arrival of FDNY, the authorities said.

The diversion of energy caused a transmission drop, which lowered the voltage of the substation to 7% of normal power and interrupted the regular distribution of power.

Small customers, such as local homes, would probably not have noticed anything outside of flickering lights, but with large customers like LaGuardia Airport, the transit system, and Rikers Island, the drop in performance led to a failure that actually resulted in a downtime.

Laguardia and Rikers both switched to their backup generators on-site, but there was probably a delay in the transmission that looked as if the facilities had lost power.

In LaGuardia, this meant that a ground stop was put into effect for about half an hour, but the operation was interrupted for hours. Among other things, passengers had to get off in aircraft and rechecked according to protocols.

At Rikers, where about 1

0,000 inmates are housed, the temporary blackout impacted the plant's steam production system, causing some buildings to lose heat and hot water. This seems to be largely corrected, although the correction department is working on additional information.

The Line 7 service on Queens' subway system was impacted for about 30 minutes while the track equipment was being reset. Some other customer electrical equipment also turned off and had to be reset.

The blue sky above the city also illuminated the city's 911 system.

"Half an hour before the transformer explosion, there were about five hundred one hundred nine hundred calls In half an hour about the explosion, more than two hundred three hundred calls 911. All kinds of calls: There was an explosion, some people thought it Be a bomb, blue light in the sky, blackout conditions, "NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill explained. "So we were right there when it started."

People also poured into social media to find out what had happened and to share their views on the so-called "Astoria Borealis".

It was pitch-black outside and suddenly the whole side of the eastern sky lit up and changed colors, "said Madeleine Frank Reeves, who saw the lights in her apartment on the Upper West Side." It took a few minutes. "

"Something crazy is happening in the skies over Manhattan right now," New York University sociologist Eric Klineberg wrote on Twitter under a flashing sky video.

Contribution to All That Cloud Covering and General Atmospheric Conditions Caused The idea was to cross the sky and make it blue over a large area.

It's unclear how long the arc flashed, but it probably was no more than a couple of minutes. "Con Edison analyzes the oscilloscope data to find out The root cause of the electrical fault is still under investigation, although it was probably a malfunction in the relay system

The utility will also turn to its large customers (mostly businesses) to help identify any damage that may have been caused by the power cycling off and on again.

One Con Edison employee was nearby when the incident happened but was not injured.

(The Associated Press Contributed to This Report.)

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