Power failures are temporary situations in which electricity becomes unavailable to a location – this could include any of its residents, citywide utilities, or even an entire country.
Power failures often stem from downed lines or damaged equipment that supplies electricity to homes and businesses; however, there can be various other reasons behind power outages as well.
Weather events are the leading cause of power outages, whether localized or widespread and lasting for days. Therefore, it is wise to prepare in advance in the event of an outage occurring during unforeseen extreme weather conditions.
The electrical grid, more commonly referred to as the power grid, is an intricate network of power stations producing electricity and transmission lines and distribution equipment that distribute it.
The grid can be damaged by severe storms, tornadoes, and other natural disasters or by human actions like car accidents or digging that hits an underground cable.
Weather-induced power outages can range from an inconvenience to a life-threatening emergency, so families should devise a plan in case their electricity goes out.
This should include meeting places for family members and important documents as well as essential supplies; additionally, it should provide for an out-of-town contact who can provide additional help with information or supplies if necessary.
Wind is another leading cause of power outages. It can damage transmission and distribution lines as well as sway and touch power lines causing short circuits. To stay safe, residents should follow the radio for any warnings of potential power outages.
If the weather turns bad and a storm is on its way, seek shelter inside an interior room that is warm, dry, draft-free, and not exposed to air exchange.
Be sure to have blankets and pillows ready for added warmth and comfort as well as flashlights and bottles of water ready should the power go out for any extended amount of time – take all important documents and supplies with you if possible if driving is an option!
Faults in the electrical system
Failure of electrical systems can result in power outages due to storms, equipment malfunction, or grid overloads.
Faulty connections in the electric grid can also cause surges that damage electronic components; most surges don’t last too long and don’t result in permanent device damage. Still, you should use sensitive equipment with care during a power surge event.
Most power outages occur as a result of issues in the distribution system, usually affecting small areas for only several minutes or hours at a time. These types of outages are among the most frequently reported incidents.
Distribution failures can be caused by various factors, including weather, equipment malfunction, and human error. Furthermore, aging equipment may lead to power outages as well.
Lightning strikes or surges can be devastating to electrical equipment. Excess voltage sent through wiring causes overheating, creating a fire hazard. Furthermore, improper installation or an infestation by rodents compounds this risk.
If a power outage threatens your workplace, be sure to prepare.
Switches should be set to the OFF position, sensitive equipment moved out of harm’s way and experimentations shut down before the power comes back on, and an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) should also be utilized as it offers protection from sudden power losses.
Brownouts and blackouts are two other common power failures, each representing a decrease in electricity available and cutting off the entire grid. Though these events occur rarely, their consequences can have lasting repercussions and be extremely disruptive to everyday life.
Power failures may not be pleasant experiences, but they’re often necessary in keeping your business functioning efficiently. There are various ways you can prepare for one, including making sure all equipment is adequately grounded and installing a UPS.
Damage to the electrical system
Although lightning is the main cause of power outages, other elements like high winds, snow, or freezing rain can have an impact on your electric system as well. When these elements come in contact with wiring, they can cause short-circuiting that stops electricity flowing to appliances and electronics in your home.
Large appliances containing motors and compressors also contribute to power surges, responsible for up to 80% of power surges when turning on or off.
This phenomenon is most frequently experienced with hairdryers, space heaters, power tools, HVAC units, or air conditioners; when overheated these appliances may begin burning their internal components resulting in melting plastic or scorch marks on outlets.
Other sources of damage may not be immediately obvious, yet no less harmful. Regular power surges cause cumulative damage that will eventually shorten the lifespan of appliances and electronic devices. Although they won’t instantly fry your equipment as would a large surge, their microprocessors will eventually wear down over time.
Protecting your electronics is essential in a storm. After experiencing a strømbrudd, power surges can occur when services are restored. If all your appliances and electronics were left plugged in at once when power returned, this could create an unexpected surge that damages them all at once.
To protect against this from occurring again during a storm, unplug all appliances beforehand before plugging them in individually when your power has returned.
As you prepare for an impending power outage, make sure your family understands its risks and what steps should be taken. Get everyone into a safe location – for instance, a basement in summer and an interior room during winter – away from doors and windows, such as the basement.
In case the outage extends further, arrange to stoe medications or food in refrigerators before heading to an area offering heat or cooling.
Equipment failure is something both maintenance managers and leaders dread hearing, as it can result in financial losses, production interruptions, and potential health and safety implications for employees.
While equipment failure may be difficult to predict or prevent entirely, companies that take proactive measures can drastically lower their failure rates.
Troubleshooting begins by recognizing symptoms.
Misfunction may have occurred as the result of uncontrollable circumstances such as an electrical surge or act of nature; however, more likely the failure was the result of inadequate maintenance or misuse of equipment.
The law requires certain equipment, such as pipeline pumps, compressors, valves, meters, and tanks, to have backup power supplies in case of failure. This typically applies to devices located on company property inaccessible to the public and often cannot be reached directly by individuals.
A failure can potentially release hazardous substances into the environment and families should be aware of potential risks – keeping emergency food and water supplies handy as well as familiarizing themselves with local emergency services providers is key when preparing for such events.