NEW ORLEANS — The Super Bowl was hit by a power outage Sunday, plunging parts of the Superdome into darkness and leading to a 34-minute delay.
The Ravens led 28-6 when most of the lights in the 71,024-seat building went out 1:48 into the second half.
Auxiliary power kept the field from going totally dark. But escalators stopped working, and the concourses were illuminated only by small banks of lights tied into emergency service.
Philip Allison, a spokesman for Entergy New Orleans, which provides power to the stadium, said power had been flowing before the lights failed.
"All of our distribution and transmission feeds going into the Superdome were operating as expected," said Allison, who added that the outage appeared to originate in a failure of equipment maintained by stadium staff.
The public address announcer said the stadium was experiencing an interruption of electrical service and encouraged fans to stay in their seats. Some fans did the wave to pass the time. Players milled around on the sidelines. Some took a seat on the bench, others on the field. A few of the Ravens threw footballs around.
Officials gathered on the field and appeared to be talking to stadium personnel. Finally, the lights came back on throughout the stadium and the game resumed.
"We sincerely apologize for the incident," Superdome spokesman Eric Eagan said.
Eagan added that the stadium's technical staff worked for more than an hour after the outage to determine what caused it but still didn't know.
Quotable: "I got a little scared. I thought there would be a rush, people knocking other people over. But they didn't panic. They started buying beer. That was the only thing to do." — Daryn Johnson, 21, who was manning a beer stand in the stadium on the power outage.
Tight game: Entering the fourth quarter, the Ravens led 28-23. But the stats were even closer. Each team had 17 first downs. The 49ers had 317 yards, the Ravens 315. And the Ravens had held the ball for 22:57 to the 49ers' 22:03.
Historic pick: Ravens S Ed Reed recorded his ninth postseason interception during the second quarter, tying the NFL record. And it was the first interception thrown by a quarterback for the 49ers, who were playing in their sixth Super Bowl. Up to that point, their quarterbacks had thrown 170 Super Bowl passes without an interception.
Calm celebration: Ravens fans hugged each other as they poured onto the streets of Baltimore after the win. Many fans wore the jersey of retiring LB Ray Lewis. Said Darren Love of the celebration: "90 percent for Ray, 10 percent for the city of Baltimore." As of late Sunday night, there were no reports of disturbances or damage in the city. The mayor previously had urged fans to celebrate responsibly.
Brrrrr: The National Weather Service said Sunday's midday temperatures in East Rutherford, N.J., site of next year's Super Bowl, were in the 20s and reached a high of 32. However, the temperature there on Super Bowl Sunday last year was 40 degrees. Two years ago, it was 46 degrees. The coldest temperature for a Super Bowl played outdoors is 39 degrees on Jan. 16, 1972, at Tulane Stadium in New Orleans. Dallas beat Miami 24-3.
Miscellany: The Ravens' fake field goal in the second quarter was the first in Super Bowl history. … Baltimore DT Haloti Ngata sprained his left knee on RB Frank Gore's third-quarter touchdown and did not return. … The 49ers' Colin Kaepernick had the longest touchdown run by a quarterback in Super Bowl history, 15 yards in the fourth. … The biggest Super Bowl deficit overcome is 10 points by the Redskins (42-10 over the Broncos in Super Bowl XXII in January 2008) and Saints (31-17 over the Colts in Super Bowl XLIV in February 2010).