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O&R Says Equipment Failure Caused Outage

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Orange & Rockland Utilities is blaming a power outage that affected more than 50,000 customers Saturday evening on an equipment malfunction at an O&R substation in Middletown.

The service area affected covers portions of Orange and Sullivan Counties in New York and Pike County, Pennsylvania.

O&R said an overhead line at the substation failed and automatically shut down adjacent equipment. The company says the cause of the overhead line failure is not known at this time but the adjacent equipment appears to be undamaged.

The company said all available crews were activated to aid in the restoration effort and expected any remaining outages to be restored by 11 a.m. Sunday.

Governor Andrew Cuomo said that Public Service Commission chair Audrey Zibelman worked with Orange and Rockland Utilities "to make sure power was fully restored and has deployed a team from the Department of Public Service to investigate the situation.”

In an unrelated incident, Indian Point Nuclear Facility's Unit 2 reactor was shut down Saturday evening due to a reported power loss to control rods.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the company reported no radiation was released into the environment and that he has also directed the state Department of Public Service to investigate the issue.

Lucas Willard is a news reporter and host at WAMC Northeast Public Radio, which he joined in 2011. He produces and hosts The Best of Our Knowledge and WAMC Listening Party.
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