A transformer reportedly exploded last night as Hurricane Sandy slammed the city, shortly before power was lost throughout much of lower Manhattan.

A power failure struck the Con Edison command center near Union Square around 8pm, according to the Wall Street Journal, following a substation failure that is reportedly responsible for loss of power in Greenwich Village and Lower Manhattan.

Con Ed had preemptively cut power to residents south of the Brooklyn Bridge in Manhattan to protect underground equipment from water damage, in a move described as unprecedented.

Many New Yorkers south of 36th Street received warning calls from the power company earlier yesterday, and Brooklynites received warning calls last night.