UPDATE: 510 homes are currently without power. Fire crews say some of the electrical gear has been "completely destroyed" and fear some customers may still be without power tomorrow morning. UK Power Networks still hopes everyone will be reconnected in the early hours of the morning.
MORE than 2,000 homes lost power when a fire broke out in an electricity substation.
Power was restored within two minutes, but nearly 1,700 homes were plunged into darkness again minutes later.
Firefighters were called to Manor Way, Kemp Town, at 7.15pm.
Three crews, from Preston Circus and Roedean, were at the scene.
A UK Power Networks spokesman said: "A UK Power Networks engineers are working as quickly and as safely as possible to restore power supplies to 1,699 customers in the Manor Way area of Brighton after a fault on the high-voltage electricity distribution network.
"At 7.03pm today (August 6), 2,018 customers lost power. All bar one of the these customers had power again within two minutes but a subsequent connected fault in the area meant another 1,698 customers lost supplies at 7.18pm.
"We appreciate how difficult it can be to lose power and would like to apologise for the inconvenience caused by this incident."
At 9.30pm UK Power Networks tweeted that staff are on site and hope to get homes reconnected at about 1am.
Bridget Harrison, 71, who lives with her son Michael Harris, 43, on Manor Green said: “I was watching TV and it went off. I said ‘oh crumbs, what’s happening’.
"Then it came back on for a couple of minutes and went off again.
"Then my son woke up and said is it the power, I looked on the trip switches and I didn’t see anything so I opened the door to see if any of the neighbours were on the street. Then I saw the fire engines were coming down.
“There was black smoke coming up from the station so they told us to get out of our bungalows in case there was an explosion. They taped it all off.
"Our concern is about the ones who live on the street who are disabled.
“I’ve been here 12 years and I’ve never seen this before. I was waiting for Coronation Street to come on so I missed that, we’re all moaning about missing the soaps but now we’re concerned about the food in the freezer and the gentleman down the street is worried about his tropical fish tank.”