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November 1, 2012

NYC utility's modeling, preparation was no match for superstorm Sandy

  • One expert says grid operators and power companies are doing the best they can with infrastructure that is ‘a marvel of engineering for the last century.'
    Associated Press

    NEW YORK — Blame a very high tide driven by a full moon, the worst storm surge in nearly 200 years, and the placement of underground electrical equipment in flood-prone areas for the most extensive storm-related power outage in New York City's history.

    It's like what happened at the Fukushima nuclear complex in Japan last year — without the radiation. At a Consolidated Edison substation in Manhattan's East Village, a gigantic wall of water defied elaborate planning and expectations, swamped underground electrical equipment, and left about 250,000 lower Manhattan customers without power.

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