• 24th April 2024

Power Outages 101 -What They Are and What Causes Them? 

Losing electricity at home, even for a few minutes, is irritating at best, but it may rapidly become hazardous even under normal conditions. It may happen anytime, so knowing what to do when the power goes out is critical. The causes of outages might vary, impacting how long it takes to restore service to your house. An NW commercial electrician can tell you more, so contact them if you need any electrical help. 

What are power outages? 

When energy — specifically, the electrical power network or electrical grid — is unavailable, this is referred to as a power outage. There are several reasons for power outages, but they all have one thing in common: they affect entire areas or regions rather than simply a single residence.   

This is because the outage is caused by the electrical supplier rather than the residence. If a home is without power while the rest of the neighborhood is, the cause is most likely a tripped circuit breaker or another household issue.  

What causes power outages? 

Here are some of the most typical reasons for power outages. 

  • Trees 

During heavy winds or when pruning by an unskilled worker, limbs might collide with electrical wires and create outages. 

  • Storms 

The most typical causes of extensive power outages include wind, heat, ice, and snow. 

  • Earthquakes 

Earthquakes of all magnitude can damage electrical infrastructure and power cables. 

  • Vehicles 

A collision with a utility pole might result in a power outage. 

  • Lightning 

Outages can occur when lightning strikes electrical equipment, transmission towers, cables, and poles. 

  • Animals 

Even with barriers between wildlife and electrical equipment, squirrels, snakes, and other tiny creatures can create a short circuit.

  • High power demand 

Overloaded electric lines, transformers, and other electrical equipment can melt and collapse during heat waves and extremely high power demand periods.

Call your local utility. 

The first step in determining what to do when the electricity goes off is to notify your utility provider. Electricity may be purchased from licensed Retail Electric Providers (REPs) in deregulated energy markets. Find the TDSP (Transmission and Distribution Service Providers), TDU (Transmission and Distribution Utility), or EDU (Electric Distribution Utilities) for your location when selecting who to call when the power goes out. That is a lot of acronyms, but they all relate to the utility company in your region that generates and distributes power.

It is just as vital to be prepared for losing electricity as knowing what to do should you lose power. For more information, talk to an electrical professional today. 

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