Explained: What caused power cuts in Mumbai, how dangerous is the outage?
Mumbai, Oct 12: Severe power cuts such as the one that has hit Mumbai and neighbouring areas on Monday morning can be dangerous events for those affected. From facing inconvenience in households, public transport, vital hospital systems, students' exams and court hearings were impacted in Mumbai following a failure of the power supply grid.
Earlier today, around 50 lakh homes and operational business around Mumbai suffered power cuts. In the middle of the peak hour, Mumbai's suburban train services were brought to a standstill for over two hours, forcing commuters, mainly essential commuters, to either switch to other means of transport, or to abandon their travel plans for the day.
To ensure that operations of the novel coronavirus and non-COVID health facilities, Mumbai's civic commissioner directed "all the hospitals to arrange for sufficient supply of diesel for at least eight hours."
Mumbai's disaster control room were also asked to keep private mobile diesel generators on stand by.
Power generators were used for conducting the state's common entrance test exams, which began from Monday, with the first shift of exams being given between 9:30 am to 12:30 pm amid the power outage. Ongoing final year online exams in several colleges could not be conducted due to the outage.
Meanwhile, it can be seen that airport services remained unaffected by the power failure. Traffic signals had also stopped working in Mumbai.
"The airport has a backup plan that gets activated within seconds in the event of any power issues. Thanks to this, operations at the airport are normal," an official statement released by a Mumbai International Airport Limited spokesperson said.
What was the reason behind the power outage?
According to Maharashtra's Energy Minister Nitin Raut, the power outage was caused by a technical failure in one of the power supply circuits at the Maharashtra State Electricity Transmission Company Limited's 400 KV supply station at Kalwa-Padgha near Thane.
The power load on the circuit that tripped had increased due to the ongoing repair and maintenance work on the other supply circuit at the station. In a video message to power consumers, Raut said that work was on to restore the power supply on a war footing.
Adani Electricity, which supplies power to most households in the suburbs in Mumbai, posted a tweet saying, "There is a major power grid failure due to which supply is affected in most areas of Mumbai. As per grid safety protocols, Adani Power System is currently supplying around 385 MW for critical services in Mumbai through the firm's Dahanu power plant."
It added that "our teams are working to restore the supply in affected areas at the earliest. We regret the inconvenience caused."