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Contributed by: bob hunt
Contributed on: August 17, 2003

Which blackout(s) did you experience?
1965 (Great Northeast Blackout)

In your own words, tell the story of your experience in the blackout(s). Try to recall specific events and the people, places, and things involved; also include more general reactions, images adn last impressions?
1965 Northeast blackout a true story


At the time of the 1965 blackout there a was national convention of Electric Power companies in Philly.

My father was there as one of four representatives from PEPCO.

At the very time when the blackout started there was ongoing at the convention a talk on the failsafes on the grid and how it was impossible for a chain reaction to ever occur. The authoritative speaker did not know that what was "impossible" was happening while he was speaking.

After the convention my father and the other three PEPCO representatives headed back to DC in one car. The growing blackout played tag with their car going down US1. One of the other three keep on saying the entire trip back that "this is impossible! this is impossible".

Baltimore and most of Maryland was knocked out.

But it was stopped at PEPCO.

The blackout was stopped at PEPCO because one employee did something that he had been told he would be fired for doing. He physically broke the seals and connections of PEPCO to the grid. PEPCO was seconds from crashing when this employee took this initiative.



bob hunt

My father was Emmette Emery Hunt worked for PEPCO 38 years.

Did either blackout seem significant or shocking at the time?
Both were significant

Why did you consider the blackout(s) to be significant or insignificant?
it should have happended

What happened to your perception of the blackout(s) when you heard the news about the full scope of the event(s)?
Most of my news was direct from my father.

Did the blackout(s) have any larger meaning in your mind?
No

Did the blackout(s) cause any profound crisis?
No

How did the blackout(s) affect your daily reliance on electricity?
Became less reliant

Cite as: bob hunt, Story #284, The Blackout History Project, 17 August 2003, <http://blackout.gmu.edu/details/284/>.
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