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The Empire State Building towers over the skyline of a blackout-darkened New York City
The Empire State Building towers over the skyline of a blackout-darkened New York City
Image: (AP Photo/File, George Widman, File)

In Pictures: Ten year anniversary of north America’s electricity blackout

Ten years ago today, an electricity power outage caused chaos in the northern American states and Canada.
Aug 14th 2013, 9:30 PM 14,095 25

ON AUGUST 14 2003, an electricity outage caused by a tree branch in Ohio plunged more than 50 million people in North America and Canada into darkness.

It was the largest power outage in America’s history. Commuters in New York City and elsewhere had to sleep on steps, hitchhike or walk home as trains were rendered powerless and gas pumps stopped working, food spoiled as refrigerators and freezers thawed, water sold out as supply plants lost their ability to supply consumers and people were fearful it was a terrorist attack as it was just two years after 9/11.

Here are some pictures of the power outage:

Were you there at the time? Tell us about it in the comments section.

- additional reporting AP

ESB: Keep kids away from disused buildings and from climbing pylons>

21,000 had gas or electricity cut for not paying bills>

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Christina Finn

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