42 years ago on July 13th, 1977
A two-day blackout sweeps across the city
The power loss began after 9pm on the 13th and began returning from 7am to 10:30pm on the 14th.
There had been another large blackout in November 1965 that caused most neighborhoods to lose power, but the night was calm and a mere inconvenience. By the summer of 1977, the city was a different world, and during the next blackout, looting and arson fires hit many neighborhoods. In the Bronx, 50 cars were stolen from a Pontiac dealership. In total, 4,500 were arrested for crimes committed during the blackout, and damages across the city were estimated at $300 million. As a consequence of the blackout, power companies modified their equipment and procedures to better protect against such a failure in the future.