Mystery power outages plague students

The stars were suddenly clearer when a campus-wide power outage struck the College Saturday around 12 a.m.

As of Saturday afternoon, Campus Police officers still didn’t know what caused the outage that morning, or another blackout that occurred just before 5 p.m.

PSE&G restored power to the campus within about 30 minutes of each outage.

Jim Lopez, a Campus Police officer who answered the phone during the first power outage, said the police had “no idea” what caused the power outage.

He said for students to be aware of any emergencies caused by the blackout, like students getting stuck in elevators.

For Danielle Kuhn, junior fine arts major, the blackout became a lockout.

Because of the outage, she couldn’t get into her townhouse after going to a concert with a group of friends.

“I came up to the house and the lounge light was on and the outside light was on, but the light on the swiper thing wasn’t on and it wouldn’t read my card at all and the doorbell wouldn’t work either,” she said.

The College conducted a planned electrical shutdown during the summer break on May 17 and 18. An e-mail sent out to students said the goal of the shutdown was “to service our transformers, switch gear, and related equipment to help prevent service interruptions during the year.”

Another planned shutdown, also conducted to prevent power outages during the year, was held in August.

Campus Police and College administrators weren’t available for comment before press time because of the holiday weekend.

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Myles Ma