Power was restored to downtown Madison around 12:30 p.m. Wednesday after authorities said an issue with a JCP&L feeder line through Chatham knocked out power throughout the borough for about an hour and a half.
The outage took out Main Street traffic lights, forced some restaurants to close for at least part of their lunch service, and affected Madison High School, where classes were continuing and lunch was still served, police said.
Madison Electric Utility Superintendent Michael Piano said the outage occurred when one of the two main JCP&L feeders to Madison went down, possibly because of an equipment failure.
Typically, Madison is able to just throw a switch and power the entire town with electricty from the other, working feeder line, but on Wednesday Madison crews had to identify an issue in its substation that was preventing that from happening.
After troubleshooting, they were able to get power to all of Madison from the one line.
"My crew did an excellent job in troubleshooting and restored power," Piano said.
He said he's not sure when Jersey Central Power & Light would have the problem feeder line, which runs through Chatham from Summit, fixed, but there should not be any issues when that feeder does come back on line.
Police reported around 11 a.m. Madison was experiencing a power outage all throughout town and the Electric Department was working to fix the issue.
Around noon, police sent an alert saying the outage was caused by a problem with a JCP&L feeder line in Chatham.
The widespread outage followed reports of a smaller, unrelated power outage affecting southeastern Madison earlier in the morning.
The earlier outage was reported around 6 a.m., and by 9 a.m. the Electric Department said power already was restored with regard to that incident. That outage was due to an equipment failure, Piano said.