New Orleans Power Company Entergy Claims Faulty Relay Caused Super Bowl Blackout

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistFebruary 8, 2013

The mystery of the blackout at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome during the third quarter of Super Bowl XLVII appears to have finally been solved.

According to the Associated Press (via the New York Daily News), Entergy, the official power supply company for the Superdome, accepted full responsibility for the power outage:

The Superdome's power company took the blame Friday for the Super Bowl blackout, saying the cause was a faulty device that had been installed in its switching gear and designed to prevent a failure of electric cables leading to the stadium.

It goes on to say that the relay was installed as a way to protect the stadium from "cable failure between the company's incoming power line and lines that run into the stadium."

At the time of the power outage, it appeared that would be the only memorable part of Super Bowl XLVII. It occurred early in the third quarter, when the Baltimore Ravens were leading the San Francisco 49ers 28-6.

The game was delayed for 34 minutes, and when you add the 30-minute halftime show by Beyonce, it basically kept the game off the air for more than an hour save for Jacoby Jones' 108-yard kickoff return for a touchdown to start the second half.

Here is a GIF of the blackout happening, courtesy of Bleacher Report. 

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When the lights came back on, the 49ers were finally able to make a game of it only to fall short 34-31.

Even with the game turning into a nail-biter, the power outage was still one of the biggest stories of the game. There was even some media talk that this might prevent New Orleans from hosting another Super Bowl, though NFL commissioner Roger Goodell shot that down.

Of course, in today's world of instant memes and social media fodder, the power outage became a great source of comedy for the people following along at home.

Blogger Will Stegemann tweeted that the Super Bowl had a similar vibe to a certain HBO show that went out with a controversial cut to black.

This game ended like The Sopranos

— Will Stegemann (@BeTheBoy) February 4, 2013

Darren Franich of Entertainment Weekly had some fun with the controversy surrounding Beyonce's lip-synching at President Obama's inauguration.


— Darren Franich (@DarrenFranich) February 4, 2013

The fine people at FunnyOrDie.com created a video where Bane, who blew up Heinz Field in The Dark Knight Rises, is the one responsible for the blackout.

The good news is the game was able to get started again, and it turned out to be very exciting, with a goal-line stand with less than two minutes to play securing the win for the Ravens.

New Orleans has been one of the staple cities for the Super Bowl over the years, so the idea of the NFL taking the game away never made much sense. It was not the perfect night the city had envisioned, but it didn't turn out to be all that bad. And now we know the cause of it.


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