NEW YORK, July 27--Ending a 26-day lockout of 8500 employees, initiated on July 1 by Con Edison with no advance notice, members of Local 1-2 report to their 7am shift following an agreement reached yesterday between management and union leaders. With the threat of a major storm or even a derecho hitting New York City, the two sides who had failed to reach agreement on major contract issues in months of negotiations were brought together by Governor Andrew Cuomo in his Manhattan office and not allowed to leave until they reached a deal. Without knowing exactly what transpired in the conference room, it seems that the safety of New Yorkers and the integrity of the grid were placed above either side's interests. Ending the lockout was also a tacit admission on the utility's side that, despite their repeated assertions that 5000 managers and retirees could fill in for 8500 utility workers, in fact it wouldn't make sense to face extreme weather condidions without those skilled workers on hand. NB There were tech issues rendering the edited video which didn't improve with repeated tries so the video sticks about two-thirds of the way through. Any suggestions welcome. This is an MPEG4 video; the original was shot with a Canon PowerShot A640.