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Heat brings power failures in Brooklyn, subways - & it could hit 100 today
Here we go again.
Just two days into a record-breaking heat wave, power cuts knocked out subway service and shut down air conditioners in Brooklyn Sunday, even though Con Ed promised it was ready for summer.
Christine Rankin was sitting on her stoop in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn, last night waiting for the power to come back on.
"If we have a hot summer, this is just going to suck," said Rankin, 42. "Our second hot day and they can't even handle it."
Temperatures hit 93 and could make a run at 100 Monday.
On Bergen St., about 300 customers lost power and were forced out onto the street to find relief from the sweltering heat as their air conditioners stopped running. "Like anything else it gets too hot and blows," a Con Ed worker on the scene told the Daily News.
Several street lights were out, forcing police to direct traffic.
Bobby Kucevic, manager of Gino's Pizza, closed his doors early last night as the Italian ices started to melt. "I don't want to close [because] maybe the lights are going to come on," he said. "But nobody knows nothing."
In Williamsburg, Brooklyn, about 160 customers lost power.
Belowground, riders on several subway lines were stranded as power cuts kayoed the signal system.
The entire G line, which links Brooklyn and Queens, was shut down. Parts of the F and 4 lines were stopped, too. The 2 and 3 lines experienced delays.
All of them were up and running within about two hours, NYC Transit officials said.
After the blackout of 2006, Con Ed vowed to fix the system. Just last week, Con Ed officials told The News that there was enough electricity to meet demand.
Sunday, a Con Ed spokeswoman repeated those reassurances, saying there is "sufficient supply."
"This is a severe heat wave, but we have extra crews on standby and we are monitoring the system closely," said Con Ed spokeswoman Elizabeth Clark.
She urged New Yorkers to conserve energy when the temperatures rise, as they're expected to reach close to 100 degrees today.
The Health Department said heat-related emergency room visits were up threefold and heat-related calls to the Emergency Medical Service were 10 times higher than usual.
"People may not be acclimated to the heat so they're feeling it more than they would if it were a midsummer heat wave," said Dr. Tom Matte, the city's director of environmental research.
The official start of summer isn't until June 21 - but the soaring temperatures feel more like the dog days of summer than spring.
Today "will be the peak of the heat wave," said John Murray, a spokesman for the National Weather Service.
On Long Island, strong thunderstorms knocked out power lines and downed trees. Service on the Long Island Rail Road was disrupted, and thousands of people were without power.
John David Wheeler, a professional barbecue griller from Mississippi, toiled over a hot pit at the Big Apple BBQ Block Party in Madison Square Park yesterday.
The temperature near the grill was a whopping 170 degrees.
"If I knew it was going to be 98 in New York today, I wouldn't have come," he said.