Equipment Failure Caused Reagan Airport Blackout

By Chris Jasurek

Dominion Energy, which supplies electric power to Reagan National Airport, took the blame for Wednesday night’s brief blackout.

“The power outage Wednesday night @Reagan_Airport at 9:36 p.m. was due to an underground equipment failure,” spokeman David Botkins tweeted Thursday morning, August 16.

Equipment failure was suspected but until that tweet, no one sure why Reagan National Airport lost power for 90 minutes on Aug. 15.

The airport went dark around 9:36 p.m. Generators lit some areas, and the outside lights, including runway lights, stayed lit.

One emergency generator was seen emitting smoke. The fire department showed up and determined that there was no flame, just smoke.

Some areas had no lights at all.

Power was restored at 10:59 p.m.

Despite the power outage, airport operations weren’t much affected.

CBS TV reported, “Arrival and departure flights were halted temporarily, but resumed operations after a short time.

“The runway lights were still working, as well as some of the lights on the outside.”

Andrew Trull, a spokesman for the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, told NBC that “a majority of the flights (had) already landed or departed” by the time the power went out, USA Today reported.

Baggage handlers had the hardest time coping with the darkness.

QZ reporter heather Timmons tweeted, “Baggage claim can’t do anything to help find luggage or take claims at the airport because all their computers are down.”

One lone baggage handler with a flashlight and a list was calling out flight numbers and passing out bags by hand.

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