Widespread power outages affected the entire Washington D.C. metro area Tuesday afternoon, because of an explosion at a southern Maryland power plant.
Many of those were brief, but some were longer and forced evacuations.
At the White House, backup generations kicked on when the power went out, so the interruption only lasted a few seconds. The complex quickly hopped back on regular power.
Power also went out at the State Department during its daily press briefing, forcing spokesperson Marie Harf to finish her comments in the dark.
Power in the U.S. Capitol Building shut down briefly twice, then came back on with a generator.
Several Metro train stations were on backup power, according to the agency. Some traffic signals were also out.
Some of the Smithsonian’s museums got affected and evacuated, according to its Twitter account.
The University of Maryland campus closed at 2PM ET, because of the outage.
About 8,000 customers lost power in Washington, according to Robyn Johnson, DC Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management spokeswoman.
Utility company Pepco released a statement blaming a “transmission line” for the outage:
“Shortly before 1 p.m. Tuesday we experienced a dip in voltage in the Washington D.C. area. This was caused by an issue with a transmission line. There was never a loss of permanent supply of electricity to customers. The dip in voltage caused equipment at some customer facilities to transfer to their backup systems. The momentary outage occurred because of customer equipment responding to a dip in voltage. Customers should be able to operate their own equipment at this time. There are no current supply problems. We have crews onsite investigating the cause.”