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Power Outage Causes in Other Countries

Why the Power Goes Out Around the World

There are several causes of a power outage, many of which are common around the U.S. These include storms, wind, ice, downed power lines, blown transformers, and overloaded power stations to name a few. Vehicle accidents and animal damage can also lead to power outages. With the U.S.’ advanced power grid, we are mostly skilled at handling and resolving outages. We are also aware of and prepared for each of the causes.

But what about in other countries? It may be surprising to know that causes of outages vary greatly in other countries. Let’s explore what some of those are.

Solar flares greatly affect power here on Earth.
Solar flares
may occur in space, but they have a great impact here on Earth. Powerful energy releases from the sun and creates bursts of solar wind as well as magnetic fields, which interrupt electrical currents. While the effects can happen anywhere, it is much more likely to hit low altitude areas. In 2001, high-pressure pulse induced currents in power lines across New Zealand caused a large transformer to fail. While at a higher altitude, Quebec also experienced a solar flare-induced outage in 1989.

Terrorism is a rare, but real cause of power outages, which occurs when the terrorists target power lines or power grid technology. In South Sudan, fuel shortages have led to power outages. There are only 6 generator sets that power the capital city, and around the country, they don’t have enough fuel for their gensets. 

Both Uganda and Tanzania have experienced power outages due to low water levels in hydroelectric dams. These dams have electric turbines, which spin when water passes through them. If the water levels get too low, they stop spinning and electricity cuts out. This happens in part due to poor maintenance, but also because these countries often experience droughts.




Beach properties damaged in an earthquake.
Much of the developing world does not have access to technology to improve utility infrastructures. Therefore, in countries such as Uganda, Ghana, and Afghanistan, poor infrastructure maintenance is a major cause of power outages. Finally, earthquakes can cause power outages. While we experience some earthquakes here in the U.S. in places such as California, we have the people and technology ready to restore power as soon as possible after such an event. Nepal does not. Several earthquakes that occurred close together took a toll on Nepal’s power grid. Restaurants and grocery stores were especially affected by this and a lot of food spoiled when refrigerators went down. 

Regardless of the cause, when it comes to power for your home, Generac has you covered. With both home backup and portable generators, you can have full power at all times…for your home, recreation, and household chores.

No matter the cause, be ready for the next outage.

Regardless of what causes your power outage, Generac has the resources you need to prepare and stay safe. As your power outage experts, we have the latest information on where outages are happening. We also have the information you need to protect your home and family—and the products, too.