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The Blackout of 2003

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Mass exodus across the Brooklyn Bridge just after 5pm.
Mass exodus across the Brooklyn Bridge just after 5pm. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
Confusion reigned as to the best way across the bridge: on the pedestrian walkway or the roadway.
Confusion reigned as to the best way across the bridge: on the pedestrian walkway or the roadway. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
Roadway and walkway were filled.
Roadway and walkway were filled. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
As frustration mounted, police struggled to give accurate information.
As frustration mounted, police struggled to give accurate information. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
A bassist tried to figure a way home.
A bassist tried to figure a way home. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
When the going gets tough, the tough play backgammon - West Broadway and White Street.
When the going gets tough, the tough play backgammon - West Broadway and White Street. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
A long wait for a bus on 6th Avenue.
A long wait for a bus on 6th Avenue. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
Traffic on Centre Street.
Traffic on Centre Street. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
A cab driver stopped for gas just when the power went off.
A cab driver stopped for gas just when the power went off. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
A long wait for gas.
A long wait for gas. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
A police officer directs pedestrians and traffic at 14th Street and Sixth Avenue.
A police officer directs pedestrians and traffic at 14th Street and Sixth Avenue. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
Soft ice cream vendors did a huge business throughout the city.
Soft ice cream vendors did a huge business throughout the city. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
Marc Goldhaber volunteered to direct traffic on Sixth Avenue and 28th Street.
Marc Goldhaber volunteered to direct traffic on Sixth Avenue and 28th Street. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
Traffic leading to the Lincoln tunnel at sunset.
Traffic leading to the Lincoln tunnel at sunset. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
Times Square: dark except for vehicle tail lights
Times Square: dark except for vehicle tail lights ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
The night Times Square went dark.
The night Times Square went dark. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
A car headlight provides light for a sidewalk cafe near Times Square.
A car headlight provides light for a sidewalk cafe near Times Square. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
A Times Square souvenir vendor conducts business under the light from a portable generator.
A Times Square souvenir vendor conducts business under the light from a portable generator. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
Riders on a packed #10 bus on Central Park West.
Riders on a packed #10 bus on Central Park West. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
A "Blackout Party" on a West 88th Street stoop.
A "Blackout Party" on a West 88th Street stoop. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
Candles in an Upper West Side browntone.
Candles in an Upper West Side browntone. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
A festive mood on Columbus Avenue.
A festive mood on Columbus Avenue. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
NYFD provided a hydrant cap so West 87th Street residents could cool off.
NYFD provided a hydrant cap so West 87th Street residents could cool off. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
Columbus Avenue silhouette.
Columbus Avenue silhouette. ( Bill Swersey/WNYC )
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