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New Meadowlands Stadium Power Outage Caused By Blown Transformer

Following Sunday’s 33-20 victory by the Dallas Cowboys over the New York Giants the outcome of the game was not the only story. The third quarter power outage that delayed the game for about 12 minutes was the other major story.

New Meadowlands Stadium CEO Mark Lamping spoke to reporters following the game. Here is some of what he said:

Opening Statement:

Earlier this evening at right about 6 p.m. we had a transformer that blew at the New Jersey Sports Authority substation. We get our power in the building through the sports authority. When that happened, our systems worked as designed; we actually have two lines coming into the stadium. As the power shifted from one line to the second we had a power glitch that occurred, it switched back to the original first line and power was restored at about 6:15 (P.M). During the entire period we had about 5 seconds where there was no power, that’s basically what happens when the power shifted from our one line coming in to the second. The system worked as designed, you never want to have power problems, it’s not the first time that it’s happened. The protocol within the stadium worked as designed; we can have the police or security speak to that. We had no security problems related to the power outage. Obviously we had what you would normally have at a Giants-Cowboy game, but we had no security incidents that were related to any of the power.

Q: What are the procedures in terms of you and the officials in terms of getting play restored and getting things going again on the field?
A: Well the NFL is in charge of what happens on the field, it’s not our responsibility. Our focus was 100% on the safety of the fans in the building and getting the power restored to the building and getting play resumed.

Q: Was there smoke or fire?

A: Not around the building.

Q: How long was the power completely out in the whole stadium?
A: About five or six seconds, that’s it. That’s what happens when there’s a switch from one line to the other. The entire episode began at about 5:59 (P.M), we did our switch from one line to the second line coming into the building at 6:15 (P.M) so about 16 minutes later, and it was literally five or six seconds during the switch that the power went down, which is what happens. That’s how the system is designed.

Q: Was there any point where you thought you might not finish the game?
A: We were thinking about what to deal with at the moment and our focus was first on the safety of the fans in the stadium and the power came back. The game was always in the hands of the NFL not the New Meadowlands Stadium.

Q: Was the transformer that blew inside of the stadium?
A: All of the problems that we incurred and resulted in issues we had here were genesis of outages from outside of the stadium.

Q: During construction was there any indication that you could have a power outage?
A: No. This isn’t the first early evening game and we’ve had plenty of night games already this year and haven’t had any power related issues, so like I said the testing will start tonight as soon as we get people out of the building. We’ll determine what the cause was and initiate any remedies necessary to make sure it doesn’t happen again.