New York City residents rely on utilities for many daily activities, from showers, powering computer systems, to operating life support systems. Weather, human error, or network disruptions can interrupt these services. While many utility disruptions are temporary and harmless, some disruptions can have devastating effects on individuals, communities, and the City.
Many New Yorkers remember the blackout of August 2003 that left the entire City without power. Some will recall the Astoria, Queens, water main break that submerged several blocks, interrupted businesses, and damaged homes and commercial property. Since then New York City has assembled task forces to refine procedures and avoid catastrophic damage from utility emergencies.
When power, water or telecommunications are disrupted, New York City implements its emergency procedures and monitors critical areas such as healthcare, transportation and infrastructure. Emergency managers from OEM, partner city agencies, and utility providers follow guidelines to restore service quickly. These guidelines are regularly updated and revised, to incorporate new technologies and information.
POWER DISRUPTION GUIDE
In 2004, New York City OEM revised the Power Disruption Operations Guide, taking in to account lessons learned from 2003 Blackout. This guide outlines how the City coordinates with City agencies to continue daily business and power companies to repair service to areas with brownouts or complete loss of power.