An unruly bank of floodlights turned off three times unexpectedly last Friday night at Washington D.C.’s major league baseball stadium during a game, forcing umpires to suspend play until the next afternoon when no lights would be required.
While technicians immediately searched for the cause of the outages, players from the two teams – the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Washington Nationals – knew where to point the blame: at pop star Taylor Swift, who had performed at Nationals Park earlier in the week.
‘@taylorswift13 your concert used up all the electricity in DC’ Dodgers star Joc Pederson tweeted, as reported by Rolling Stone.
‘I like the theory that the lights are Taylor Swift’s fault,’ agreed teammate Brett Anderson.
The Nationals’ Max Scherzer also took to Twitter, where he noted, ‘Well who was the last one to use Nationals Park last? Taylor Swift.. I blame her for the power outs tonight.’
Amid the joking, the technical crew got to the heart of the matter.
‘Our initial investigation indicates the power failure at Nationals Park last night was caused by a faulty circuit breaker,’ the Nationals said the next day. ‘It was replaced shortly after midnight and the lights were tested throughout the night with no additional outages. While we believe we have identified and corrected the issue, additional tests are being conducted by the manufacturer of the field lighting system.’
Indeed, no known incidents have been reported since then, during which time the Nationals played one more night game.
Nationals Park opened in 2008. The team’s website boasts about the stadium’s ‘green’ credentials. It notes that ‘Nationals Park is the nation’s first major professional stadium to become LEED Silver Certified by the U.S. Green Building Council. The project incorporates a variety of sustainable design elements.’ (LEED is the US government’s ‘Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design’ certification programme).
The attributes include, among others, water conservation, recycled and local building materials, and ‘energy conserving light fixtures (that) help reduce light pollution and realize a projected 21 percent energy savings over typical field lighting.’
Undoubtedly there was less light pollution last Friday night.
Photo is from Something Original via Wikimedia