A squirrel was the cause of Wednesday's power outage on Metro-North, delaying thousands of commuters during the morning rush hour.
According to a Metro-North statement released shortly after 4 p.m. Wednesday, "The delays of up to 45 minutes that you experienced during your morning commute resulted from the loss of catenary power from Greenwich to Harrison shortly before 7 AM.
"This power loss was caused by a ground to the electrical feed at the substation in Cos Cob. This was caused when a squirrel entered the area and shorted a transformer.
"We immediately dispatched an emergency crew to the substation where they reset the relays for power protection. Once this was done, our Power Control Center personnel in Grand Central were able to restore power to the area by 7:25 AM.
"We quickly devised a plan to operate a limited number of available trains between New Rochelle and Grand Central, however, because this occurred at the height of our rush hour, a backlog of trains began to build, causing further delays."
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Editor's note: This is not the first occasion when a Fairfield County squirrel has caused major electricity disruption. Some history, here and elsewhere:
- Last October, in that town.
- In 1987, NASDAQ's facility in Trumbull was victimized by a squirrel, shutting down that stock exchange.
- In 1994, NASDAQ was hit again.
- This 2007 article in Daily Kos website memorializes other incidents of havoc wrecked by these arboreal rodents.