Pakistan was hit by a nationwide blackout for more than two hours after the breakdown of a major plant caused power stations to stop working across the country, officials said Monday.
Rai Sikandar, an official at the ministry of electricity and water, says there was a malfunction at a plant in the country’s southwest around midnight on Sunday that put pressure on all major power producing systems, which subsequently stopped working.
The blackout began at about 11.30 pm after a privately run 1,200 MW thermal power plant in south-western Balochistan province developed a fault and stopped generating electricity.
Javed Parvez, CEO of the Islamabad Electric Supply Company said, “The HUBCO (Hub Power Company) plant developed a fault and the load was transferred to the Mangla and Tarbela hydel projects but they tripped. After that, several smaller powerhouses tripped.”
Chronic power shortages usually cause blackouts in Pakistan and several areas in major cities do not have electricity for several hours on daily basis.
However the darkness that suddenly enveloped pakistan on Sunday night caused some to fear there had been a terrorist attack or a military coup.
Blackouts are nothing new in Pakistan because of chronic power shortages, with many areas having no electricity for several hours a day.
In the meantime officials are saying that power is being restored on a phased basis.