Talk:Power outage

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Stromleitung = powerline --Head 22:53, Aug 14, 2003 (UTC)

reasons for cascading failure[edit]

From the article: Under certain conditions, a network component shutting down can cause current fluctuations in neighboring segments of the network.

May someone explain the reason for such events more precisely? Thanks --Abdull 17:02, 21 July 2005 (UTC)

Third world countries[edit]

The article says: "In most third world countries, power cuts go unnoticed by most citizens of upscale means, as maintaining an uninterruptible power supply is often considered an essential facility of a home."

Let's rewrite this sentence. It uses weasel words like "most" and "often considered" as well as the poorly defined phrase "of upscale means". And how would we verify this claim? Tonyfaull (talk) 23:55, 17 January 2008 (UTC)


Power outages may also be caused by terrorism (attacking power plants or electricity pylons) in developing countries. The Shining Path movement was the first to copy this tactic from Mao Zedong.

is awkward, what's so special about being the first to copy something?

Power outages may also be caused by military or terrorist attacks (attacking power plants or electricity pylons) in developing countries. This tactic was used by Mao Zedong; the Shining Path movement was the first terrorist group to copy it.

might be a better way to say it. —Random832 14:56, 30 January 2008 (UTC)

Power outage Links[edit]

See: 6 Electric Power Outage Map Links, External

Is there any reason why a search for "Power Outage" links to [1] and not [2] I mean this article would be alot more useful than one about Charmed Episodes and it's alot more relevant. If someone could correct this because I'm not sure how. Vergil 577 (talk) 10:15, 28 May 2008 (UTC)


Do we have a citation that a brownout is a drop in voltage rather than current? My understanding (partly from National Grid (UK) reserve service) and from speaking to professionals from the electricity generating industry is that a brown out is the result of the frequency of the grid falling below normal operational levels (resulting in less available current), as opposed to the actual voltage dropping. I'm happy to be wrong, but I currently interpret the two articles to be contradictory. -- ratarsed (talk) 09:09, 2 October 2008 (UTC)


A redirect SAG reffer to this article (i mean Voltage sag). but here isn´t information about sag. -- (talk) 15:35, 21 December 2008 (UTC)

There's also no discussion of what causes brownouts, whether they're intentional or not. It seems like a lot of US energy industry flacks like to visit this site and edit what's there. (talk) 01:00, 13 December 2009 (UTC)


I've heard "brownout" refer to a daytime outage, whereas "blackout" refers to a nighttime power outage.

No, it has nothing to do with the time of day. SpinningSpark 19:41, 5 August 2010 (UTC)
Then that should be clarified in the intro. As a Brit I always thought a blackout was a US word for a night-time power cut, but I guess that's wrong, isn't it? Malick78 (talk) 07:57, 10 May 2013 (UTC)

Effects of thunderstorms[edit]

I'm sure there are multiple causes for power outages during thunderstorms, but I don't know of any except tree limbs breaking wires.

  • What causes blackouts on the scale of one to a few seconds? (Lightning strikes? Power lines/tree limbs swaying in the wind and arcing? And is the effect direct, or the result of automatic switching to protect the grid?)
  • How about brownouts on the same time scale of seconds? Are these the same mechanisms or different? Is it a coincidence when that these sometimes precede minute-scale blackouts?
  • Minute-scale blackouts (one to a few minutes). Are these the result of automatic protective measures in the grid? If so, what kind of things are being protected against? (Lightning strikes? Anything else?) Is the power switching back on automatic?
  • I know outages on the scale of hours to days are caused by downed lines, but what about a fraction of an hour to a few hours? Are physical repairs really this fast, or does this have to do with protective measures? Again, is it automatic, or is it human intervention? (On-site? Long-distance?)

I would find answers to any of these questions interesting, and I know enough people wonder the same things for a discussion on this to be worth a section in the article. SSSheridan (talk) 17:16, 20 April 2012 (UTC)

Sometimes utilities have to fix something to restore power. In my own back yard a pole transformer failed - first the utility had to find out the transformer was out from customer calls, then had to dispatch a crew to inspect the transformer, then make preparations to replace the transformer, replace the transformer and then re-energize. No lines went down, but if apparatus is damaged it can take longer to find it and prepare to replace it than the actual replacment takes. On rural and overhead lines, automatic circuit breakers called autoreclosers are used; if, for example, one customer had a line knocked down, the whole street might go dark momentarily as the autorecloser opens, then power will come back on when it closes; if the fault has gone away (wire broken completely, fuse blown, tree limb fallen off wires), power may even stay on for other customers and only one service is out. These autoreclose cycles take a few seconds - sometimes a recloser will try three times and give up. Then a crew has to come out and fix the fault. --Wtshymanski (talk) 18:22, 20 April 2012 (UTC)