NEW YORK – A group of political leaders urged Gov. George Pataki on Sunday to designate a section of the city suffering from a prolonged power failure a disaster area, making it eligible for federal aid.

“Anywhere else it would be,” Rep. Joe Crowley, D-N.Y., said at a news conference in the borough of Queens, which officials often complain is overlooked. “If this were an area of 100,000 people in upstate New York, the governor would have declared it a disaster area.

Service to an estimated 25,000 customers failed during the heat wave last week. Figuring an average of four people to a household, officials estimated about 100,000 people were affected.

As of Sunday, Consolidated Edison workers, reinforced by workers from other states, had restored power for about 13,000 households, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.

Full piece here.  OK, go ahead and have your little disaster.  It’s just that, with tsunamis and missiles and killer storms and terrorist bombs on commuter trains, this little ol’ blackout seems a little tame by comparison.  Still, with Con Ed claiming not to know why the power’s gone or how long it will take to fix it, there is an air of the “inexplicable natural force” to this little episode.