New Yorkers took to social media to post pictures and videos of the odd phenomenon, as wild speculation swirled as to the cause of the eerie blue sky. "Literally so confused I think aliens just tried to steal NY", one user wrote on Twitter.
"I saw the light come and then everything looked blue", said Catalina Romero, another Astoria resident. No injuries have been reported, but some areas of the city have experienced blackouts, including the LaGuardia Airport. InsideEdition.com's Lisa Voyticki reports. "The affected equipment was isolated to a single section within the substation", read a Friday morning statement from Consolidated Edison, the energy company that runs the Astoria substation.
Meanwhile, the power cut hit New York's LaGuardia Airport, which warned travellers to be prepared for delays.
The NYPD reported that the fire was under control as of 9:30pm.
The issue caused a transmission dip in the area, and Con Edison crews responded with the Fire Department of New York, Con Edison said.
Aside from a light show that led to headlines such as "Astoria Borealis", the biggest effect was felt at LaGuardia Airport, which was forced to temporarily close and use backup power after suffering an outage.
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Besides lighting up the sky in shades of blue visible as far as Manhattan and New Jersey, temors shook buildings and rattled windows.
By late Thursday, officials said the event was caused by nothing more than a transformer explosion.
Bill de Blasio, the mayor of NY, later confirmed that the unusual light had been caused by an electrical surge at the Con Edison substation and said there were no injuries and no further fire.
Substations transform electricity that comes in from power plants at high voltage down to lower voltage levels, and send it on for use.
Some began looking for a scientific explanation as to why a power plant failure would produce blue light specifically.