Emergency workers look at a manhole on the 1800 block of University Avenue where equipment may have failed and caused a power outage in downtown Berkeley on Tuesday, July 10, 2012. Photo: David Yee

The downtown BART station and numerous businesses in the downtown area were closed for about 90 minutes Tuesday evening after a power outage.

The electricity went out after an equipment failure at 5:29 pm and was restored at 7:09 pm, according to PG&E officials. About 7,000 customers were affected.

Update 4:30 pm: Deputy Fire Chief Gil Dong said there was an underground electrical vault fire at MLK and University Avenue. The fire caused the manhole cover to blow off and land ten feet away. The fire department responded to several fire alarms and stuck elevator calls during the outage, said Dong.

Frances Dinkelspiel, Berkeleyside and CItyside co-founder, is a journalist and author. Her first book, Towers of Gold: How One Jewish Immigrant Named Isaias Hellman Created California, published in November...