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Good Samaritans and Eerie Scenes: New Yorkers Take to Social Media During Midtown Blackout

Some scenes were rather eerie while other social media users gave shout outs to good Samaritans appearing at intersections directing traffic

What to Know

  • People took to social media in the midst of complete chaos after a blackout in Manhattan
  • The power outage was across much of midtown Manhattan and part of the Upper West Side
  • Social media posts show would-be bustling areas, dark and isolated

People took to social media in the midst of complete chaos to showcase not only the eerie scenes popping up but that ever so present and resilient New York spirit during a massive blackout that stretched across much of midtown Manhattan and part of the Upper West Side Saturday evening.

The outage, which knocked out power to nearly 73,000 customers, impacted the area from 40th Street to Columbus Circle, according to the FDNY. The Con Ed power outage map indicated the outage stretched from the far west side to Fifth Avenue.

A social media post shows an eerie scene of a would-be busy shopping section of 30 Rock that was dark and isolated, while other posts showed massive crowds outside in the New York City summer heat. Subway stations, which would normally be bustling with crowds of people, were deserted.

Marquees throughout the city were also seen unlit -- an uncommon sight for the Big Apple.

Yet, as seems to be the case in times of chaos, New Yorkers, once again, came together to help one another.

Videos posted on social media show instances of good Samaritans directing traffic in the middle of Manhattan streets left without traffic lights due to the massive power outage.

And in another example of that unshakable, resilient New York spirit -- the casts of the award-winning musical "Come From Away" and "Hadestown" gave impromptu performances to crowds on the street given that the massive blackout prompted all but three Broadway theaters to close for the night. "Pretty Woman" and "Cher," also had audiences standing on the streets.

The power outage was caused by a manhole fire, according to tweets from the NYPD and the mayor

There was nothing to suggest anything deliberate, according to a senior fire official and a senior NYPD official who spoke on a condition of anonymity. They said the problem appeared to be a transformer issue at the 49th Street and 64th Street substations.

In an ironic twist, the blackout comes on the anniversary of the 1977 New York City outage that left most of the city without power.

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