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Power outage causes near-panic
Residents nervous as parts of South Beach, Verranzano Bridge lose lights after wire short-circuits
Monday, September 24, 2001
ADVANCE STAFF REPORT
Jittery South Beach residents deluged the Advance newsroom with phone calls last night in reaction to a brief power outage that darkened parts of the their community and the entire Verrazano-Narrows Bridge.
Lights went out for about 30 seconds after a telephone wire connected to a transformer on McClean Avenue short-circuited a power wire at 10:55 p.m., a fire official said.
But the short interlude was enough to cause near-panic in the area. Many people who contacted the Advance said they were nervous about the outage in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center.
Some residents reported hearing an explosion. One caller, Parla Menti, said her daughter saw a brilliant light emanating from the ground near the Verrazano Bridge.
"She said she saw a blue flash come from the ground and shoot up to the sky," Ms. Menti said.
Police at the 122nd Precinct said the stationhouse received several calls about an explosion in South Beach.
A fire official said last night the power outage would not cause any long-term damage and that the wires would be repaired by today.
-- Martin Thompson (email@example.com), September 24, 2001