Major power outage in downtown Montreal, parts of Longueuil

As many as 40,000 homes and businesses in the Montreal area lost power late Wednesday morning.

Hydro-Quebec is blaming a break on a major power line for the outage, which is affecting parts of downtown Montreal and the south shore, particularly Longueuil's St. Hubert boroughs.

Reports are suggesting the problem is tied to a blown transformer inside a building near the corner of Ste. Catherine and Bleury Sts. which injured two workers. Hydro-Quebec has not confirmed that story.

Several thousand Hydro customers in Beaconsfield and Kirkland were also affected by a planned maintenance outage at around the same time.

The utility says as of 1 p.m. Wednesday, power had been restored to all but a few thousand subscribers in downtown Montreal and in St. Hubert.

As for when everyone will be back online, Hydro's estimates vary, depending on where you are. The utility says power in the affected areas should be back sometime before 5 p.m.

Check out Hydro-Quebec's Info-Pannes page (in English) for more information.