( 4UMF NEWS ) Memo Hinted At Superdome Power Outage:
The cause of a 34-minute blackout at the Super Bowl remains under investigation, but public records released Monday show that Superdome officials were worried about a power outage several months before the big game.
An Oct. 15 memo released by the Louisiana Stadium & Exposition District, which oversees the Superdome, says tests on the dome’s electrical feeders showed they had “some decay and a chance of failure.”
Entergy New Orleans, the company that supplies the stadium with power, and the structure’s engineering staff “had concerns regarding the reliability of the Dome service from Entergy’s connection point to the Dome,” the memo says. Those concerns were due in part to “circumstances that have previously occurred with the electrical service regarding transient spikes and loads.”
The board later authorized spending nearly $1 million on Superdome improvements, including more than $600,000 for upgrading the dome’s electrical feeder cable system.
“As discussed in previous board meetings, this enhancement is necessary to maintain both the Superdome and the New Orleans Arena as top tier facilities, and to ensure that we do not experience any electrical issues during the Super Bowl,” says a LSED document dated Dec. 19.
An attorney for the state board that oversees the Superdome said the blackout did not appear to be related to the replacement in December of electrical equipment connecting the stadium to Entergy. Officials with the utility and the Superdome noted that an NFL game, the Sugar Bowl and another bowl game were played there in recent weeks with no apparent problems.