More than half of Argentina was left without power on Wednesday (March 01, 2023) after a fire broke out at the national electricity grid. Buenos Aires and other major cities of the South American country are wholly or partly affected, reports BBC. Read More: Reopening embassy will boost trade between Argentina, Bangladesh: Visiting minister hopes According to reports, the fire began in open fields and spread to coastal areas, where it damaged vital power lines and shut down a nuclear power plant. Argentina is experiencing both a heat wave and a drought. An estimated 150,000 people are still without power in the Buenos Aires Metropolitan Area, the BBC report said. Read More: Woman burned to death in Chattogram fire
State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid has urged the officials of the Dhaka Power Distribution Company Limited (DPDC) to introduce a smart management system in their power grid as part of the government’s goal to build a Smart Bangladesh. “Developing human resource and technology-friendly people can play a vital role in building a Smart Bangladesh”, he said while speaking at a workshop titled: ``DPDC Smart Grid Pilot Project” at Bidyut Bhaban in the city on Sunday. He said mass people take a bit of time to become technology-dependent. “But you have to play a role to encourage them to be modern and technology-dependent”, he told the DPDC officials. Read: Many TIN holders failed to submit tax returns by extended deadline He also urged the officials of the Bangladesh Rural Electrification Board (BREB) to initiate a move to bring their command-areas under a modern system. “BREB should take a coordinated plan to introduce technology-friendly systems to coordinate their operations”, he added. He also emphasised on adopting a smart-grid policy for all the departments under the country’s power system. Under the pilot project, construction and expansion of substations, capacitor banks will be installed. Read: Bangladesh Bank heist: Probe report submission deferred again to Feb 14 The smart grid project will include an integrated communication system, advanced sensing with artificial intelligence, advanced metering infrastructure (AMI), measurement infrastructure, comprehensive decision support, and easy to use system interfaces. Initially this facility will be available in Satmasjid Road, Lalmatia, Asadgate and Jeegatla areas in the city which will gradually expand. Sakhawat John Chaudhary, Managing Director of NKSOFT Corporation, USA made a presentation on how the smart grid project will work. With DPDC managing director Bikash Dewan in the chair, the function was also addressed by director of Global Brand Communication, USA, Farzana Yasmin Asha, minister consular and head of cooperation of the European Union Maurizio.
Telecom services are likely to be disrupted in some parts of the country following the national power grid failure today, Association of Mobile Telecom Operators of Bangladesh (AMTOB) has said. “Due to national power grid failure, telecommunication services may be disrupted in some parts of the country. We are sorry for the inconvenience,” it said in a statement. Read: National power grid failure: Blackout across Bangladesh National power transmission grid failed at 2:05 pm – causing blackouts across Bangladesh, except some parts of the north. According to officials at Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) and Power Grid Company of Bangladesh (PGCB), the transmission line tripped somewhere in the eastern part of the country, especially districts on the east of Jamuna river. Read: RMG factories bearing power outages of 4 to 10 hours a day: BGMEA President Following the grid failure, all power plants tripped one after another and electricity supply went off in Dhaka, Chattogram, Sylhet, Barishal and Mymensingh divisions. It now remains to be seen how the national power grid failure affects telecom services in Bangladesh.
Ukrainian authorities say the decommissioned Chernobyl nuclear plant, the site of the world’s worst nuclear disaster, has been knocked off the power grid. Emergency generators are now supplying backup power. The state communications agency says the outage could put systems for cooling nuclear material at risk. Read:UK seizes private jet suspected of Russia link The cause of the damage to the power line serving Chernobyl was not immediately clear, but it comes amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The site has been under control of Russian troops since last week. Ukrainian grid operator Ukrenerho said that according to the national nuclear regulator, all Chernobyl facilities are without power and the diesel generators have fuel for 48 hours. Without power the “parameters of nuclear and radiation safety” cannot be controlled, it said. Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said the grid supplying electricity is damaged and called for a cease-fire to allow for repairs.
Power Grid Company of Bangladesh Ltd. (PGCB) has signed a number of contracts with two Chinese joint venture companies to construct 11 grid substations in Khulna region. According to the PGCB, the grid sub-stations will enhance the capacity of high voltage power transmission in the greater Khulna region. The PGCB signed a contract for two joint ventures with China National Technical Import & Export Corporation (CNTIC) and Shanghai Electric Company (SEC) to set up a new indoor GIS Grid sub-station of 400/230/132 kV at Karer Hat area and upgrade the existing 230/33 kV grid sub-station at Mirsarai in Chattagram to a 400/230 kV grid sub-station. PGCB company secretary Md Jahangir Azad and CNTIC deputy general manager Zhang Kun signed the contract on behalf of their respective sides. READ: PGCB moves to transmit power from Payra, Rampal to Dhaka The two projects will cost Tk 736 crore. As per the contract, the contractor will complete the job of the projects within next 30 months and hand them over to the PGCB. Earlier on Sunday, another agreement was signed with the joint venture of China Machinery Engineering Corporation (CMEC) and China National Electric Engineering Company Limited (CNEEC) at the PGCB headquarters. Under the agreement, a 230/132/33 kV GIS grid substation at Rupsha and four grid substations with 132/33 KV capacity at Meherpur, Maheshpur, Fultala and Monirampur will be constructed. The capacity of the existing grid sub-stations at Satkhira, Kaliganj (Jessore) and Kushtia will be expanded to 132 kV Bay and Bagerhat sub-station to 132 kV GIS Bay. The work will cost about Tk 492 crore. READ: PGCB inks Tk 597cr deal with China firm to set up 4 grid substations PGCB Company Secretary Md. Jahangir Azad and CNEEC Deputy General Manager Ge Wenbo signed the contract on behalf of their respective sides. According to the agreement, the joint venture contractor will complete the job and hand over the substations to PGCB within the next 24 months. The signing ceremony was attended by PGCB Executive Director (P&D) Mohammad Yaqub Elahi Chowdhury, project directors and other senior officials from both the parties were present on the occasion.
Rescuers set out in hundreds of boats and helicopters to reach people trapped by floodwaters and utility crews mobilized Monday after a furious Hurricane Ida swamped the Louisiana coast and made a shambles of the electrical grid in the sticky, late-summer heat. One of the most powerful hurricanes ever to hit the U.S. mainland weakened into a tropical storm overnight as it pushed inland over Mississippi with torrential rain and shrieking winds, its danger far from over. Ida was blamed for at least one death — someone hit by a falling tree outside Baton Rouge. But with many roads impassable and cellphone service knocked out in places, the full extent of its fury was still coming into focus. Christina Stephens, a spokesperson for Gov. John Bel Edwards, said that given the level of destruction, “We’re going to have many more confirmed fatalities.”The governor’s office said damage to the power grid appeared “catastrophic.” And officials warned it could be weeks before power is fully restored. “For the most part, all of our levees performed extremely well -- especially the federal levees -- but at the end of the day, the storm surge, the rain, the wind all had devastating impacts,” Edwards said. “We have tremendous damage to homes and to businesses.”All of New Orleans lost power right around sunset Sunday as the hurricane blew ashore on the 16th anniversary of Katrina, leading to an uneasy night of pouring rain and howling wind. When daylight came, streets were littered with tree branches and some roads were blocked. While it was still early, there were no immediate reports of the catastrophic flooding city officials had feared. “I had a long miserable night,” said Chris Atkins, who was in his New Orleans home when he heard a “kaboom” and all the sheetrock in the living room fell into the house. A short time later, the whole side of the living room fell onto his neighbor’s driveway. “Lucky the whole thing didn’t fall inward. It would have killed us,” he said. The misery isn’t over for many. Stephanie Blaise returned to her home with her father in the Lower Ninth Ward of New Orleans after evacuating. It only lost some shingles. But without power and no idea when electricity would be restored, she didn’t plan to stay long. “We don’t need to go through that. I’m going to have to convince him to leave. We got to go somewhere. Can’t stay in this heat,” she said. Four Louisiana hospitals were damaged and 39 medical facilities were operating on generator power, the Federal Emergency Management Agency said. Officials said they were evacuating scores of patients to other cities. The governor’s office said over 2,200 evacuees were staying in 41 shelters as of Monday morning, a number expected to rise as people were rescued or escaped from flooded homes. Stephens said the state will work to move people to hotels as soon as possible so that they can keep their distance from one another. “This is a COVID nightmare,” she said, adding: “We do anticipate that we could see some COVID spikes related to this.” Interstate 10 between New Orleans and Baton Rouge — the main east-west route along the Gulf Coast — was closed because of flooding, with the water reported to be 4 feet deep at one spot, officials said. READ: 1st death from Hurricane Ida; power out across New Orleans Preliminary measurements showed Slidell, Louisiana, got at least 15.7 inches of rain, while New Orleans received nearly 14 inches, forecasters said. Other parts of Louisiana and Mississippi, Alabama and Florida got 5 to 11 inches. Amid the maze of rivers and bayous around the New Orleans area, people retreated to their attics or rooftops and posted their addresses on social media with instructions for search-and-rescue teams on where to find them.The Louisiana National Guard said it activated 4,900 Guard personnel and lined up 195 high-water vehicles, 73 rescue boats and 34 helicopters. Local and state agencies were adding hundreds of more. Jefferson Parish in suburban New Orleans knew of 500 people who said they were going to stay in areas that were flooded, and it began sending out dozens of boats, Parish Council member Deano Bonano told WWL-TV. More than a million customers in Louisiana and Mississippi were without power, according to PowerOutage.US, which tracks outages nationwide. That left them without air conditioning and refrigeration in the dog days of summer, with highs forecast in the mid-80s on Monday, climbing to nearly 90 by Wednesday. The hurricane twisted and collapsed a giant tower that carries key transmission lines over the Mississippi River to the New Orleans area, causing widespread outages, Entergy and local authorities said. The power company said more than 2,000 miles of transmission lines were out of service, along with 216 substations. The storm also flattened utility poles and brought trees down onto power lines. “We don’t know if the damage is something we can get up quickly,” Entergy New Orleans CEO Deanna Rodriguez told WWL-TV. The governor said on Sunday that 30,000 utility workers were in the state to help restore electricity. AT&T’s phone system was down all across southeastern Louisiana. Many people resorted to using walkie-talkies. The governor’s office staff had no working phones. People who evacuated struggled to check on those who didn’t leave. Charchar Chaffold left from her home near LaPlace, Louisiana, for Alabama after a tree fell on her place on Sunday. She frantically tried to get in touch with five family members who stayed behind. She last heard from them Sunday night. They were in the attic after water rushed into their home. Chaffold tried texting, but she didn’t know if their phones were dead and or service was out. “They told me they they thought they was going to die, I told them they are not and called for help,” Chaffold said. Farther south, emergency officials had not heard from Grand Isle since Sunday afternoon. About 40 people stayed on the barrier island, which took the brunt of the hurricane and was swamped by seawater, Jefferson Parish President Cynthia Lee Sheng told NBC. Ida’s 150 mph (230 kph) winds tied it for the fifth-strongest hurricane ever to hit the mainland. Its winds were down to 45 mph (72 kph) early Monday. In Mississippi’s southwestern corner, entire neighborhoods were surrounded by floodwaters, and many roads were impassable. READ: Powerful Hurricane Ida closing in on Louisiana landfall Ida was expected to pick up speed Monday night before dumping rain on the Tennessee and Ohio River valleys Tuesday, the Appalachian mountain region Wednesday and the nation’s capital on Thursday. Forecasters said flash flooding and mudslides are possible along Ida’s path before it blows out to sea over New England on Friday.