Monday, November 9, 2015

Fifty years ago today, on November 9th 1965, the northeastern United States was pitched into a night of darkness. As commuters began to make their way home at the end of the work day, a shocking absence of electricity left millions without light or power. Commuters found themselves stuck on subways, drivers were unaided by traffic lights, and workers were stranded in elevators.

The Great Northeastern Blackout, sparked by a power station failure near Niagara Falls, impacted southern Canada and major cities along the eastern seaboard – New York, Boston, Hartford and Providence. Thirty-five million people across 80,000 square miles waited and wondered why the power went out and when it would return.

The nation had never experienced a wide-scale blackout like this before and few citizens, despite cold war calls for civilian readiness, were prepared for it. Times have changed and our electric grid is monitored and maintained as never before, yet, I encourage you to take the time and steps necessary to be prepared. While September is known as National Preparedness Month, you will do well to follow the link and find helpful information that can help you and your family stay safe from power outages during cold weather and beyond.

Associated Press file photo Boston November 9, 1965