Relay device led to Super Bowl outage

Feb. 8, 2013 at 2:06 PM
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NEW ORLEANS, Feb. 8 (UPI) -- An electrical relay device, installed to protect against power problems at New Orleans' Superdome, has been determined to be the cause of the Super Bowl outage.

Entergy New Orleans said Friday the device had been installed to protect Mercedes-Benz Superdome equipment in event of a cable failure. The device triggered, causing a switch to open when it shouldn't have -- resulting in about half the lights in the Superdome to go out early in the second half of Sunday's Super Bowl.

"While some further analysis remains, we believe we have identified and remedied the cause of the power outage and regret the interruption that occurred during what was a showcase event for the city and state," Charles Rice, president and chief executive officer of Entergy New Orleans, said Friday.

Entergy said the device worked without problems during a series of previous events, including the Sugar Bowl, New Orleans Bowl and the Saints' regular-season finale. Still, the relay has been removed.

The power outage caused the Super Bowl to be delayed about 35 minutes. When it resumed, with San Francisco trailing Baltimore 28-6, the 49ers mounted a comeback but still came up short and the Ravens won the game 34-31.

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