Power is out for around half the people in New Zealand’s largest city, Auckland. At around 8:30 this morning, high winds blew a grounding cable onto high-voltage cables in the Otahuhu substation, causing about 1/3 of the load to fail, including all buildings and traffic control in the central city.
Current estimate for reconnection is mid-afternoon (2 to 3 hours from the time of this post).
Update: Ok yeah so it wasn’t Baghdad or Mogadishu or anything like that (as some ‘harden up’ type comments mentioned), but then again this is supposed to be a modern, first-world city. And of course the TV commentators foamed and spat and complained about “lack of capacity”, but not one mentioned the fact that regardless of how much capacity is supplied to Auckland, current plans have it all coming through the same substation. Surely that is a recipe for further disaster? Alternative line routes might be up the east coast and across the Tamaki Estuary, but I can’t see that flying with the owners of properties under the path of pylons. Why are we so scared of tunnels in this country? Cost?