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T Waiting on NStar, Power Should Be Restored By Tonight

Power company bringing in a new transformer. Symphony and Prudential green line stops remain closed, but busses still serve the area.

This morning NStar is bringing in a new transformer to Back Bay to restore power to the 13,000 people still without it after last night's fire, according to the utility company.

NStar is in the process of bringing in the transformer by crane and said power should be restored by tonight. Last night up to 21,000 had their power cut after a 4-alarm electrical fire in the Back Bay Hilton parking garage spread to two large 115,000 volt transformers, causing them to fail.

NStar still does not know the cause of the fire but official Joe Nolan said that they suspect the fire destroyed one transformer, causing too heavy a load to be placed on the second.

Nolan said that NStar has deployed 50 massive generators to restore power, according to the Boston Globe.  

Power was lost in portions of the Back Bay, South End, Chinatown, Theater District and Kenmore areas. 

"We successfully restored power to about 8,000 customers who were served by the second substation that was affected, so we’re down to about 13-thousand who remain out and affected by this outage. The area restored includes from Clarendon St. down through the Theatre District and Chinatown," NStar said in the latest press release, as of 11:10 a.m.

"We’re working today to restore power to the remaining customers using generators from all over New England and New York, as well as temporary cable. As we do this, we’ll be restoring power throughout the day and we anticipate full restoration to last into the evening. Our focus right now is getting customers back online. When that’s complete, then we’ll turn our focus on the cause," the release read.

Traffic lights remain out in many places, but according to NECN, there have been no reports of looting.

T Stations Remained Closed

Two MBTA stations remain closed. Green line service is not stopping at Prudential and Symphony stops. However, the Mass. Ave. stop on the orange line reopened this morning.

MBTA Spokesman Joe Pesaturo told Patch that the authority is waiting on word from NStar on when power will be restored before the closed stations can be reopened. In the mean time, he said, the 39 bus will continue to make stops at both locations.

Roads in Back Bay are open, except for a portion of Boylston Street near Mass. Avenue. The Pru Tunnel reopened this morning.

Fire Broke Out About 6:30 p.m.

Firefighters responded at about 6:30 p.m. to the smoky fire at the Back Bay Hilton parking garage.

The hotel was evacuated at 7 p.m. Officials advised all residents and those in the area remain indoors with windows closed.

Fire officials received reports of people trapped in elevators. And a radio report last night said the Restaurant at the top of the Pru was evacuated with patrons asked to walk down 52 flights of stairs. 

Angela Wang March 14, 2012 at 06:11 PM
Thank you Patch editors for the updates! Draining my car battery to read them.
Tori Blackhart March 14, 2012 at 09:17 PM
Does anyone know what restaurants are open now in the Back Bay area around the Christian Science Plaza? My coworkers & I are looking for a dinner spot.

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