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Photo via Wikimedia Commons
A squirrel running on a utility line

Just as utility workers were scrambling to restore electricity to nearly 500 residents in Middle Village after an outage hit part of the neighborhood on Wednesday morning, hundreds more residents lost their power in nearby Maspeth.

According to a Con Edison spokesperson, the lights first went out at about 9 a.m. on July 25 in the area generally bounded by 62nd Road, 69th Street, 70th Street and Metropolitan Avenue.

A preliminary investigation determined that a squirrel apparently made contact with a transformer in the area, triggering the outage and more than likely zapping the critter out of existence.

Con Edison crews are on the scene working to repair the damage and bring power back to the affected area. According to the Con Edison outage map, it was anticipated that service will be fully restored on or about 12:30 p.m. on July 25.

Screen Shot 2018-07-25 at 10.41.27 AM

Then, at about 11:06 a.m., the office of Councilman Robert Holden began receiving reports of a second, much larger outage that struck areas of Maspeth and northern Middle Village. In a Facebook post, the Councilman’s office reported that nearly 2,500 customers lost electricity in an area bounded by the Long Island Expressway and 62nd Avenue between 67th and 72nd streets.

It’s not clear what sparked the second outage, but Holden reported that Con Edison crews were on the scene working on the problem. Fortunately, that outage was resolved at about 11:45 a.m., according to Holden’s office.

A Con Edison spokesperson told QNS that the second outage was the result of a feeder cable being struck and damaged by a private contractor. The outage lasted approximately 40 minutes, from 10:48 to 11:28 a.m.; the utility was able to restore customers quickly by rerouting the power supply through alternate cables in the area.

Nearly three months ago, Middle Village was hit with a temporary power outage due to problems with overhead wires and transformers serving the area.

Back on May 25, some 500 customers in the area of Penelope and Furmanville Avenues, 73rd Place, Metropolitan Avenue and 78th Street lost power for several hours that day. Con Edison indicated that something, possibly a squirrel, had made contact with overhead cables on Metropolitan Avenue, thus triggering the power failure.

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James McCay July 26, 2018 / 09:07PM
Sure- the squirrels fault! Great deduction ConEd, maybe if you didn't cut down all of the squirrel's trees you'd be blaming rats! As kids my friends and I were horrified to see a squirrel get ELECTROCUTED in the middle of walking on a ConEd wire. I guess you'd blame that on the transformer too- even though the squirrel was NOWHERE NEAR THE TRANSFORMER! I want the name of the person who "ratted" out that squirrel!!! Boy how much more can Di Biozo and CuNomo kill NYC?
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James McCay July 26, 2018 / 08:57PM
Sure, it's the "squirrels fault"! Great deduction Con Ed, maybe if you didn't cut down all of the squirrel's trees you'd be blaming rats! As kids my friends and I were horrified to see a squirrel get ELECTROCUTED in the middle of walking on a Con Ed wire. I guess you'd blame that on the transformer too- even though the squirrel was NOWHERE NEAR THE TRANSFORMER! I want to name of the person who "ratted" out that squirrel!!! Boy how much more can Di Biozo and Cunomo kill NYC?
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Leida Rivera July 25, 2018 / 02:53PM
It's 230pm and power has not been restored in Maspeth.
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Roseann Bongiovanni July 25, 2018 / 12:52PM
Did anyone catch the name of that squirrel? It would be nice to send a thank you card for helping us save money on our electric bill.
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