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Encyclopedia > 2003 North America blackout

The 2003 North America blackout was a massive power outage that occurred throughout parts of the northeastern United States and eastern Canada on Thursday, August 14, 2003. Although not affecting as many people as the later 2003 Italy blackout, it was the largest blackout in North American history. It affected an estimated 10 million people in the Canadian province of Ontario (about one-third of the population of Canada), and 40 million people in eight U.S. states (about one-seventh of the population of the U.S.). Outage-related financial losses were estimated at $6 billion USD. A power outage is the loss of the electricity supply to an area. ... Regional definitions vary The Northeastern United States is a region of the United States defined by the U.S. Census Bureau. ... Eastern Canada is a geographic region of Canada, normally considered to be east of Manitoba, although its definition varies depending on who you ask it generally describes these Provinces. ... August 14 is the 226th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (227th in leap years), with 139 days remaining. ... 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The 2003 Italy blackout was a serious power outage that affected all of Italy, except the island of Sardinia for 9 hours and part of Switzerland near Geneva for 3 hours on 28 September 2003. ... World map showing North America A satellite composite image of North America. ... Map of Canada Canada is a federation of ten provinces which, together with three territories, comprise the worlds second largest country in total area. ... Motto: Ut Incepit Fidelis Sic Permanet (Latin: Loyal she began, loyal she remains) Official languages English (French has some legal status but is not fully co-official) Flower White trillium Capital Toronto Largest city Toronto Lieutenant-Governor James K. Bartleman Premier Dalton McGuinty (Liberal) Parliamentary representation  - House seat  - Senate seats... A state of the United States (a U.S. state) is any one of the fifty states (four of which officially favor the term commonwealth) which, along with the District of Columbia, form the United States of America. ...

NOAA satellite image of northeastern US and Canada taken before blackout on Aug. 13, 2003, at 9:21 p.m. EDT.
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NOAA satellite image of northeastern US and Canada taken before blackout on Aug. 13, 2003, at 9:21 p.m. EDT.
Satellite image during blackout taken on Aug. 14, 2003, at 9:03 p.m. EDT.
Enlarge
Satellite image during blackout taken on Aug. 14, 2003, at 9:03 p.m. EDT.

Contents

Download high resolution version (1000x625, 123 KB)NOAA satellite image of the northeast United Statse, taken Aug. ... Download high resolution version (1000x625, 123 KB)NOAA satellite image of the northeast United Statse, taken Aug. ... The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is a scientific agency of the United States Department of Commerce focused on the conditions of the oceans and the atmosphere. ... Download high resolution version (1000x625, 135 KB)NOAA satellite image of northeast US taken Aug. ... Download high resolution version (1000x625, 135 KB)NOAA satellite image of northeast US taken Aug. ...


Immediate impact

Toronto, Ontario, on the evening of August 14.
Toronto, Ontario, on the evening of August 14.

According to system logs, a massive power fluctuation affected the transmission grid at 4:10:48 p.m. EDT. Between 4:12 and 4:15 p.m. EDT, outages were initially reported in Cleveland, Toledo, New York City, Buffalo, Albany, Detroit, and parts of New Jersey. This was followed by other areas initially unaffected, including all five boroughs of New York City and parts of Long Island, Westchester County, Rockland County, New Jersey, Vermont, Connecticut, and most of Southern and Northeastern Ontario, including Toronto, Ottawa, Kingston, Sudbury, Kitchener, London and Windsor. It was estimated that the blackout covered an area of roughly 9,300 square miles (24,000 square kilometers). Eventually a large, somewhat triangular area bounded by Lansing, Michigan, Sault Ste. Marie, the shore of James Bay, Ottawa, metropolitan New York and Toledo were left without power. According to the official analysis of the blackout prepared by the US and Canadian governments, more than 508 generating units at 265 power plants shut down during the outage. Some 22 of these were nuclear power plants. Image File history File links Photographer: User:camerafiend File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links Photographer: User:camerafiend File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... EDT can stand for: Eastern Daylight Time Eau de toilette electrodynamic tether. ... Flag Seal Nickname: The Forest City Motto: Progress and Prosperity Location Location in Cuyahoga County, Ohio Coordinates , Government Country State County United States Ohio Cuyahoga Mayor Frank G. Jackson (D) Geographical characteristics Area     City 213. ... Flag Seal Nickname: The Glass City Location Location in the state of Ohio Government Country State County United States Ohio Lucas Mayor Carty Finkbeiner (D) Geographical characteristics Area     City 217. ... Flag Seal Nickname: Big Apple Location Location in the state of New York Government Counties (Boroughs) Bronx (The Bronx) New York (Manhattan) Queens (Queens) Kings (Brooklyn) Richmond (Staten Island) Mayor Michael Bloomberg (R) Geographical characteristics Area     City 1,214. ... Flag Seal Nickname: City of Good Neighbors Location Location of Buffalo in New York State Government County Erie County Mayor Byron Brown Geographical characteristics Area     City 136. ... Flag Seal Location Location in Albany County and the State of New York Coordinates , Government Country   State     County United States   New York     Albany Founded Incorporated 1614 1686 Mayor Gerald D. Jennings Geographical characteristics Area     City 56. ... Flag Seal Nickname: Motor City, Motown, D-Town, The D, The Renaissance City, Detroit Rock City Motto: Speramus Meliora; Resurget Cineribus (Latin for, We Hope For Better Things; It Shall Rise From the Ashes) Location Location in Wayne County, Michigan Coordinates , Government Country State County United States Michigan Wayne County... Official language(s) None, English de facto Capital Trenton Largest city Newark Area  Ranked 47th  - Total 8,729 sq mi (22,608 km²)  - Width 70 miles (110 km)  - Length 150 miles (240 km)  - % water 14. ... A borough is an administrative division used in the Canadian province of Quebec, in some states of the United States, and formerly in New Zealand. ... Mercator projection of Long Island Long Island is an island in New York, USA. At 1,377 square miles (3567 km²) and is home to 7. ... Westchester County is a suburban county with about 940,000 residents located in the U.S. state of New York. ... Rockland County is a county located in the state of New York. ... Official language(s) None, English de facto Capital Trenton Largest city Newark Area  Ranked 47th  - Total 8,729 sq mi (22,608 km²)  - Width 70 miles (110 km)  - Length 150 miles (240 km)  - % water 14. ... Official language(s) None Capital Montpelier Largest city Burlington Area  Ranked 43rd  - Total 9,620 sq mi (24,923 km²)  - Width 80 miles (130 km)  - Length 160 miles (260 km)  - % water 3. ... Official language(s) English Capital Hartford Largest city Bridgeport Area  Ranked 48th  - Total 5,549 sq. ... Southern Ontario is the portion of the Canadian province of Ontario which lies south of the French River and Algonquin Park. ... Northeastern Ontario is the region within the Canadian province of Ontario which lies north and east of the Great Lakes. ... Motto: Ut Incepit Fidelis Sic Permanet (Latin: Loyal she began, loyal she remains) Official languages English (French has some legal status but is not fully co-official) Flower White trillium Capital Toronto Largest city Toronto Lieutenant-Governor James K. Bartleman Premier Dalton McGuinty (Liberal) Parliamentary representation  - House seat  - Senate seats... Template:Hide = Motto: Template:Unhide = Diversity Our Strength Image:Toronto, Ontario Location. ... This article is about the capital city of Canada. ... Kingston, Ontario, is a historic city in Ontario, Canada, located in the Quebec City-Windsor Corridor at the eastern end of Lake Ontario, where the lake runs into the St. ... Motto: Template:Unhide = Location City Information Established: 1883 (as Sudbury) 2001 (as Greater Sudbury) Area: 3,354 km² Population:  - City (2001)  - CD Rank  - Municipal Rank 155,219 20th in Canada 26th in Canada Population density: 46. ... Flag Motto: ex industria prosperitas (Latin, prosperity through industry) Government Country Province Canada Ontario Mayor Carl Zehr Geographical characteristics Area     City ? km²     Land   136. ... Flag Nickname: The Forest City Location Coordinates , Government Country Province County Canada Ontario Middlesex County Settled Incorporated 1826 (as village) 1855 (as city) City Mayor Governing Body MPs MPPs Anne Marie DeCicco London City Council Sue Barnes (LPC) Joe Fontana (LPC) Irene Mathyssen (NDP) Joe Preston (CPC) Chris Bentley (OLP... Flag Seal Motto: Location Coordinates , Government Country Province County Canada Ontario Essex* Founded 1854 (as village) 1892 (as city) City Mayor Governing Body Members of Parliament: Provincial Representatives: Eddie Francis Windsor City Council Joe Comartin (NDP) Brian Masse (NDP) Dwight Duncan (LIB) Sandra Pupatello (LIB) Geographical characteristics Area     City 120. ... Flag Seal Location Location in Ingham County, Michigan1 Coordinates , Government Country State County United States Michigan Ingham, Eaton, Clinton Mayor Virg Bernero (D) Geographical characteristics Area     City 35. ... Flag Seal Nickname: The Soo Motto: Naturally Gifted Location Coordinates , Government Country Province District Canada Ontario Algoma District Incorporated –as a town –as a city 1887 1912 City Mayor Governing Body MPs MPPs John Rowswell The Corporation of the City of Sault Sainte Marie Tony Martin David Orazietti Geographical characteristics... James Bay in summer 2000 James Bay (French, Baie James) is a large body of water on the southern end of Hudson Bay in Canada. ... This article is about the capital city of Canada. ...


Within in large area affected, only a little over 200,000 people in the Niagara Peninsula of Ontario, Canada, and the portion of New York State north and west of Albany continued to have power while the entire surrounding area dropped off the power grid. This was due to the action of transmission circuit protective devices at Sir Adam Beck Generating Station in Niagara Falls, at a switching station in Cornwall, and in central New York State, that arrested the collapse of this portion of the grid. Niagara Regional Municipality (2001 population 410,574), also known as Niagara Region, Regional Niagara, or the Regional Municipality of Niagara, is an area covering 12 municipalities, including th cities of Niagara Falls, Port Colborne, St. ... Motto: Ut Incepit Fidelis Sic Permanet (Latin: Loyal she began, loyal she remains) Official languages English (French has some legal status but is not fully co-official) Flower White trillium Capital Toronto Largest city Toronto Lieutenant-Governor James K. Bartleman Premier Dalton McGuinty (Liberal) Parliamentary representation  - House seat  - Senate seats... Statue of Sir Adam Beck, located at University Avenue and Queen Street West in Toronto. ... Niagara Falls, Ontario from Niagara Falls State Park in winter Location of Niagara Falls in the Niagara Region Niagara Falls, Ontario (2001 population 78,815) is a city on the Niagara River, in the Golden Horseshoe region. ... Cornwall. ...


Some essential services remained in operation in most of these areas, although backup generation in some cities was not up to the task. The phone systems remained operational in most areas; however, the increased demand by people phoning home left many circuits overloaded. Water systems in several cities lost pressure forcing water boil advisories. Cellular telephones experienced significant service disruptions as cellular transmission towers were overloaded with the sudden increase in volume of calls. Major cellular providers continued to operate on standby generator power. Television and radio stations mostly remained on the air with the help of backup generators which remained online throughout the blackout. Mobile phones from various years A mobile phone or cellular (cell) phone is an electronic telecommunications device. ... Auxiliary power: Electric power that is provided by an alternate source and that serves as backup for the primary power source at the station main bus or prescribed sub-bus. ...


It was a seasonally hot day (over 31°C or 88°F or higher) across much of the affected regions, in fact the heat played minor, although mutiple roles in the initial events that triggered the wider regional power outage ie. high power demand and sagging power lines. Buildings normally cooled by air conditioning became hot, some also without water supply and tempers frayed. However, there was not a huge surge in crime, which had been anticipated by many, including law enforcement.


In areas where power remained off after nightfall, the Milky Way and orbiting artificial satellites became visible to the naked eye in metropolitan areas where they cannot ordinarily be seen due to the effects of light pollution. Note: This article contains special characters. ... A satellite is any object that orbits another object (which is known as its primary). ... This photo of New York City shows excessive sky glow, one form of light pollution, partly caused by many unshielded lights. ...


Most interstate rail transportation in the United States was shut down, and the power outage's impact on international air transportation and financial markets was widespread. Meanwhile, the reliability and vulnerability of all electrical power grids was called into question. Acela Express in West Windsor, NJ Amtrak Cascades service with tilting Talgo trainsets in Seattle, Washington Amtrak train in downtown Orlando, Florida For other uses, see Amtrak (disambiguation). ...


Media coverage and official reports

In the United States and Canada, the regional blackout dominated news broadcasts and news headlines beginning August 15. American broadcast media preempted normal programming in favor of full-time, commercial-free coverage of the unfolding story, as did Canadian broadcast media. Once terrorism had been conclusively ruled out as a cause, many stations switched back to normal programming following an 8:30 p.m. EDT address by President George W. Bush. National news stations, such as the CBC and CNN, continued to cover the story by inviting politicians and electrical experts to discuss the situation and ways to prevent blackouts. Internationally, coverage of the story focused on the development of the situation in New York City. August 15 is the 227th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (228th in leap years), with 138 days remaining. ... George Walker Bush (born July 6, 1946) is an American businessman and politician, was elected in 2000 as the 43rd President of the United States of America, re-elected in 2004, and is currently serving his second term in that office. ... Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Cipher-block chaining ... The Cable News Network, usually referred to as CNN, is a cable television network founded in 1980 by Ted Turner. ... Flag Seal Nickname: Big Apple Location Location in the state of New York Government Counties (Boroughs) Bronx (The Bronx) New York (Manhattan) Queens (Queens) Kings (Brooklyn) Richmond (Staten Island) Mayor Michael Bloomberg (R) Geographical characteristics Area     City 1,214. ...


More than two days later, the cause of the blackout was officially still under investigation, but the possibility of a terrorist attack was uniformly dismissed only 20 minutes into the blackout. The following is a timeline of acts and failed attempts that can be considered terrorism. ...


Statements made in the aftermath

During the first two hours of the event, various officials offered speculative explanations as to its root cause:

  • Official reports from the office of Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien stated that lightning had struck a power plant in northern New York, resulting in a cascading failure of the surrounding power grid and wide-area electric power transmission grid. However, power officials in the State of New York responded by stating that the problem did not originate in the United States, that there was no rain storm in the area where the lightning strike was supposed to have taken place and that the power plant in question remained in operation throughout the blackout.
  • Canadian Defence Minister John McCallum blamed an outage at a nuclear plant in Pennsylvania, but that state's authorities reported that all the plants were functioning normally. McCallum later stated that his sources had given him incorrect information.
  • CNN cited unnamed officials as saying that the Niagara-Mohawk power grid, which provides power for large portions of New York and parts of Canada, was overloaded. Between 4:10 and 4:13 p.m. EDT, 21 power stations throughout that grid shut down.
  • New Mexico governor Bill Richardson, who formerly headed the Department of Energy, in a live television interview 2 hours into the blackout characterized the United States as "a superpower with a third-world electricity grid". In Europe this statement was published accompanied with comparisons highlighting the tighter, safer and better interconnected European electricity network.
  • In the ensuing days, various critics focused on the role of electricity market deregulation for the inadequate state of the electric power transmission grid, claiming that deregulation laws and electricity market mechanisms have failed to provide market participants with sufficient incentives to construct new transmission lines and maintain system security.
  • Later that night, claims surfaced that the blackout may have started in Ohio up to one hour before the network shut down, a claim denied by Ohio's FirstEnergy utility.
  • The president of the North American Electric Reliability Council (NERC) said that the problem originated in Ohio. [1]
  • As of Saturday morning, investigators believed that the problem began with a sudden shift in the direction of power flow on the northern portion of the Lake Erie Transmission Loop, a system of transmission lines that circles Lake Erie on both U.S. and Canadian soil.

Stephen Harper is the current Prime Minister of Canada. ... Jean Chrétien (born January 11, 1934), was the twentieth Prime Minister Of Canadal, serving from November 4, 1892 to December 12, 2003. ... Lightning strikes the Eiffel Tower 1906 - one of the first images of lightning in an urban environment Lightning is a powerful natural electrostatic discharge produced during a thunderstorm. ... A cascading failure is failure in a system of interconnected parts, where the service provided depends on the operation of a preceding part, and the failure of a preceding part can trigger the failure of successive parts. ... Transmission lines in Lund, Sweden Transmission towers and lines in Coquitlam, British Columbia. ... The Honourable John McCallum, PC, MP, MA, PhD (born April 9, 1950) is a Canadian politician, economist and university professor. ... A nuclear power station. ... Official language(s) None Capital Harrisburg Largest city Philadelphia Area  Ranked 33rd  - Total 46,055 sq mi (119,283 km²)  - Width 160 miles (255 km)  - Length 280 miles (455 km)  - % water 2. ... The power grid run by the Niagara-Mohawk company, provides power for New York state and parts of Canada. ... Official language(s) None Capital Santa Fe Largest city Albuquerque Area  Ranked 5th  - Total 121,665 sq. ... William Blaine Bill Richardson (born November 15, 1947) is an American politician and a member of the Democratic Party. ... The United States Department of Energy (DOE) is a Cabinet-level department of the United States government responsible for energy policy and nuclear safety. ... Electricity markets have been and continue to be developed as a result of the deregulation of electricity utilities around the world. ... Deregulation is the process by which governments remove restrictions on business in order to (in theory) encourage the efficient operation of markets. ... Transmission lines in Lund, Sweden Transmission towers and lines in Coquitlam, British Columbia. ... FirstEnergy provides power, natural gas and services to parts of Ohio, Pennsylvania and New Jersey. ... Lake Erie, looking southward from a high rural bluff near Leamington, Ontario Lake Erie (pronounced ) is one of the five large freshwater Great Lakes in North America, which are among the largest in the world. ...

Causes

Background

Electrical power cannot easily be stored over extended periods of time, and is generally consumed within hundreds of milliseconds of being produced. The demand load on any power grid must be matched by supply to it and its ability to transmit that power. Any great overload of a power line, or underload/overload of a generator can cause hard-to-repair and costly damage, so the power grid is disconnected if a serious imbalance is detected. Power lines normally grow longer and sag between their towers when they get hotter as they carry more power, reaching a designed lowest height above the ground at a specified power level. To prevent the sagging lines from coming too close to trees and causing a short circuit the trees are pruned, often on a five-year cycle. If the lines touch the trees the lines are disconnected by systems which detect the sudden change in power flow from the short circuit. Transmission lines in Lund, Sweden Electric power, often known as power or electricity, involves the production and delivery of electrical energy in sufficient quantities to operate domestic appliances, office equipment, industrial machinery and provide sufficient energy for both domestic and commercial lighting, heating, cooking and industrial processes. ... (Redirected from 1e-1 s) To help compare orders of magnitude of different times this page lists times between 10−1 seconds and 100 seconds (0. ...


These power changes from a line going out of service can sometimes cause cascading failures in the areas around them as other parts of the system see the fluctuations. These are normally controlled by delays built into the shutdown processes and by robust power networks with many alternative paths for power to take, which have the effect of reducing the size of the ripples. The borders of the blacked out areas on August 14th were where the blackout areas encountered the systems with more spare capacity. A cascading failure is failure in a system of interconnected parts, where the service provided depends on the operation of a preceding part, and the failure of a preceding part can trigger the failure of successive parts. ...


The operators of the power system control center are responsible for ensuring that they balance the supply of power, the loads (customers demanding that power), and the transmission line capacity, so that their system was in a state where no single fault can cause it to fail. After a failure affecting their system, operators are required, within thirty minutes, to obtain more power from generators or other regions, or to shed load (meaning cut power to some areas) until they can be sure that the worst remaining possible failure anywhere in the system won't cause an unplanned system collapse. In an emergency they are expected to immediately shed load as required to bring things into balance.


To assist the operators there are computer systems, with backups, which issue alarms when there are faults on the transmission or generation system. They also have power flow modeling tools which let them analyze what is currently happening on their network, predict whether any parts of it may be overloaded and predict what the worst possible failure left is so that they can change the power generation, load or transmission to prevent a failure if that accident happens. If the computer systems and their backups fail they are required to scan themselves instead of relying on the computer alerts. If they can't analyze and understand what they are seeing on their system they are supposed to switch to a more assuredly safe operating pattern. If there is a failure they also notify adjacent areas which may be affected, so they can predict the effect on their own systems. In power engineering, the power flow study is an important tool involving numerical analysis applied to a power system. ... Itaipu Dam is a hydroelectric generating station Electricity generation is the first process in the delivery of electricity to consumers. ...


Backing up the local operators are regional coordinating centers which bring together information from adjacent areas and perform further checks on the system, looking for possible failures and alerting operators in different systems to them.


Investigation efforts

A joint federal task force was formed by the governments of Canada and the U.S. to oversee the investigation and report directly to Ottawa and Washington. The task force was led by then-Canadian Natural Resource Minister Herb Dhaliwal and U.S. Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham. Harbance Singh (Herb) Dhaliwal, PC , B.Comm (born December 12, 1952) is a Canadian politician. ... Spencer Abraham Edward Spencer Abraham (born June 12, 1952 in East Lansing, Michigan) is an American politician, of Syro-Lebanese extraction. ...


In addition to determining the initial cause of the cascading failure, the investigation of the incident also included an examination of why safeguards designed to prevent a repetition of the Northeast Blackout of 1965 failed. Issues of failure to maintain the electrical infrastructure, failure of upgrading to so-called "smart cables", failure of shunting and rerouting mechanisms, AC vs. DC intersystem ties, and substitution of electricity market forces for central planning were expected to arise. The North American Electric Reliability Council, a joint Canada-U.S. council, is responsible for dealing with these issues. The Northeast Blackout of 1965 was a significant disruption in the supply of electricity on November 9, 1965 affecting Ontario, Canada and Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont, New York, and New Jersey in the United States. ... City lights viewed in a motion blurred exposure. ... Direct current (DC or continuous current) is the continuous flow of electricity through a conductor such as a wire from high to low potential. ... Electricity markets have been and continue to be developed as a result of the deregulation of electricity utilities around the world. ... The North American Electric Reliability Council (NERC) was formed in 1968 by the electric utility industry to promote the reliability and adequacy of bulk power supply in the electric utility systems of North America. ...


Despite the absence of any indication of terrorism or sabotage, and days before terrorist claims were made, the United States Department of Homeland Security immediately started a separate investigation of its own. Terrorism refers to a strategy of using violence, or threat of violence to generate fear, cause disruption, and ultimately, to bring about compliance with specific political, religious, ideological, and personal demands. ... Sabotage is a deliberate action aimed at weakening an enemy through subversion, obstruction, disruption, and/or destruction. ... The United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is a Cabinet department of the Federal Government of the United States with the responsibility of protecting the territory of the United States from terrorist attack and responding to natural disasters. ...


Findings

On November 19, 2003, the U.S.-Canada Power System Outage Task Force released an interim report placing the cause of the blackout on FirstEnergy Corporation's failure to trim trees in part of its Ohio service area. The report said that a generating plant in Parma, Ohio, a suburb of Cleveland, went off-line amid high electrical demand, and strained high-voltage power lines later went out of service when they came in contact with "overgrown trees". It also found that FirstEnergy did not take remedial action or warn other control centers until it was too late because of a bug in the Unix-based General Electric Energy's XA/21 system [2] that prevented alarms from showing on their control system [3], and they had inadequate staff to detect and correct the software bug. The cascading effect that resulted ultimately forced the shutdown of more than 100 power plants. [4] November 19 is the 323rd day of the year (324th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar. ... 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... FirstEnergy provides power, natural gas and services to parts of Ohio, Pennsylvania and New Jersey. ... Official language(s) None Capital Columbus Largest city Columbus Largest metro area Cleveland Area  Ranked 34th  - Total 44,825 sq mi (116,096 km²)  - Width 220 miles (355 km)  - Length 220 miles (355 km)  - % water 8. ... Parma is a city located in Cuyahoga County, Ohio and is the largest suburb of Cleveland, Ohio. ... Unix or UNIX is a computer operating system originally developed in the 1960s and 1970s by a group of AT&T Bell Labs employees including Ken Thompson, Dennis Ritchie, and Douglas McIlroy. ... GE redirects here; for other uses, see GE (disambiguation). ...


Sequence of events

Blackout sequence of events, August 14, 2003 [5][6], times in EDT

  • 12:15 p.m. Inaccurate data input renders a system monitoring tool in Ohio ineffective.
  • 1:31 p.m. The Eastlake, Ohio, generating plant shuts down. The plant is owned by FirstEnergy, a company that had experienced extensive recent maintenance problems, including a major nuclear-plant incident in 1985.
  • 2:02 p.m. First 345-kV line in Ohio fails due to contact with a tree in Walton Hills, Ohio.[7][8]
  • 2:14 p.m. An alarm system fails at FirstEnergy's control room and is not repaired.
  • 2:27 p.m. Second 345-kV line fails due to tree.
  • 3:05 p.m. A 345-kV transmission line fails in Parma, south of Cleveland due to a tree.
  • 3:17 p.m. Voltage dips temporarily on the Ohio portion of the grid. Controllers take no action, but power shifted by the first failure onto another 345-kV power line causes it to sag into a tree at 3:32 p.m., bringing it offline as well. While Mid West ISO and FirstEnergy controllers try to understand the failures, they fail to inform system controllers in nearby states.
  • 3:39 p.m. A FirstEnergy 138-kV line fails.
  • 3:41 and 3:46 p.m. Two breakers connecting FirstEnergy’s grid with American Electric Power are tripped as a 345-kV power line and 15 138-kV lines fail in northern Ohio. Later analysis suggests that this could have been the last possible chance to save the grid if controllers had cut off power to Cleveland at this time.
  • 4:06 p.m. A sustained power surge on some Ohio lines begins uncontrollable cascade after another 345-kV line fails.
  • 4:09:02 p.m. Voltage sags deeply as Ohio draws 2 GW of power from Michigan.
  • 4:10:34 p.m. Many transmission lines trip out, first in Michigan and then in Ohio, blocking the eastward flow of power. Generators go down, creating a huge power deficit. In seconds, power surges out of the East, tripping East coast generators to protect them, and the blackout is on.
  • 4:10:37 p.m. Eastern Michigan grid disconnects from western part of state.
  • 4:10:38 p.m. Cleveland separates from Pennsylvania grid.
  • 4:10:39 p.m. 3.7 GW power flow from East through Ontario to southern Michigan and northern Ohio, more than ten times larger than the condition 30 seconds earlier, causing voltage drop across system.
  • 4:10:40 p.m. Flow flips to 2 GW eastward from Michigan through Ontario, then flip westward again in a half second.
  • 4:10:43 p.m. International connections begin failing.
  • 4:10:45 p.m. Western Ontario separates from east when power line north of Lake Superior disconnects. First Ontario plants go offline in response to unstable system. Quebec is protected because its lines are DC, not AC.
  • 4:10:46 p.m. New York separates from New England grid.
  • 4:10:50 p.m. Ontario separates from Western New York grid.
  • 4:11:57 p.m. Last lines between Michigan and Ontario fail.
  • 4:13 p.m. End of cascade. 256 power plants are off-line. 85% went offline after the grid separations occurred, most of them on automatic controls.

Eastlake, Ohio information sign Eastlake is a city in Lake County, Ohio, United States. ... Davis-Besse nuclear power plant is a single unit nuclear reactor located on the southwest shore of Lake Erie near Oak Harbor, Ohio. ... Walton Hills is a village located in Cuyahoga County, Ohio. ...

Effects

A map of the areas affected by the blackout(disputed—see talk page)
A map of the areas affected by the blackout(disputed)
Population of Major Cities affected at a glance
City Number of people affected
New York City and Surrounding Areas 21,100,000
Greater Toronto Area 5,600,000
Detroit 5,400,000
Cleveland 2,900,000
Ottawa 780,000 of 1,120,000*
Buffalo and Surrounding Areas 1,100,000
Rochester 1,050,000
Hamilton 680,000
London (Canada) 350,000
Toledo 310,000
Windsor 208,000
Estimated Total [9] 50,000,000

*Ottawa-Hull is a special case in that it is divided by a provincial boundary and the Ontario and Québec grids are not interconnected in any way. Gatineau had power. One may have seen the drastic cutoff of areas still having power when they were crossing the Portage Bridge between Gatineau and Ottawa - the cutoff was at the provincial line (lights on the bridge were still on in the Quebec side.) Image File history File links Download high resolution version (2289x1744, 135 KB) Summary A map of the states and provinces affected by the w:2003 North America blackout. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (2289x1744, 135 KB) Summary A map of the states and provinces affected by the w:2003 North America blackout. ... Flag Seal Nickname: Big Apple Location Location in the state of New York Government Counties (Boroughs) Bronx (The Bronx) New York (Manhattan) Queens (Queens) Kings (Brooklyn) Richmond (Staten Island) Mayor Michael Bloomberg (R) Geographical characteristics Area     City 1,214. ... The Greater Toronto Area (called the GTA by local residents) is the largest metropolitan area in Canada. ... Flag Seal Nickname: Motor City, Motown, D-Town, The D, The Renaissance City, Detroit Rock City Motto: Speramus Meliora; Resurget Cineribus (Latin for, We Hope For Better Things; It Shall Rise From the Ashes) Location Location in Wayne County, Michigan Coordinates , Government Country State County United States Michigan Wayne County... Flag Seal Nickname: The Forest City Motto: Progress and Prosperity Location Location in Cuyahoga County, Ohio Coordinates , Government Country State County United States Ohio Cuyahoga Mayor Frank G. Jackson (D) Geographical characteristics Area     City 213. ... Motto: Template:Unhide = Advance Ottawa/Ottawa en avant Location City Information Established: 1850 as Bytown Area: 2,778. ... Flag Seal Nickname: City of Good Neighbors Location Location of Buffalo in New York State Government County Erie County Mayor Byron Brown Geographical characteristics Area     City 136. ... Nickname: The Flour City, The Flower City, The Worlds Image Center Motto: Rochester: Made for Living Official website: www. ... Motto: Together Aspire - Together Achieve Motto: Steel City Area: 1,117. ... Flag Nickname: The Forest City Location Coordinates , Government Country Province County Canada Ontario Middlesex County Settled Incorporated 1826 (as village) 1855 (as city) City Mayor Governing Body MPs MPPs Anne Marie DeCicco London City Council Sue Barnes (LPC) Joe Fontana (LPC) Irene Mathyssen (NDP) Joe Preston (CPC) Chris Bentley (OLP... Flag Seal Nickname: The Glass City Location Location in the state of Ohio Government Country State County United States Ohio Lucas Mayor Carty Finkbeiner (D) Geographical characteristics Area     City 217. ... Flag Seal Motto: Location Coordinates , Government Country Province County Canada Ontario Essex* Founded 1854 (as village) 1892 (as city) City Mayor Governing Body Members of Parliament: Provincial Representatives: Eddie Francis Windsor City Council Joe Comartin (NDP) Brian Masse (NDP) Dwight Duncan (LIB) Sandra Pupatello (LIB) Geographical characteristics Area     City 120. ... This article is about the capital city of Canada. ... Hull, Québec, as seen from Ottawa Hull is part of the city of Gatineau, Quebec, Canada. ... Motto: Ut Incepit Fidelis Sic Permanet (Latin: Loyal she began, loyal she remains) Official languages English (French has some legal status but is not fully co-official) Flower White trillium Capital Toronto Largest city Toronto Lieutenant-Governor James K. Bartleman Premier Dalton McGuinty (Liberal) Parliamentary representation  - House seat  - Senate seats... During the 1960s, a terrorist group known as the Front de libération du Québec (FLQ) launched a decade of bombings, robberies and attacks on government offices. ... Motto: Ursus super montem ivit Area: 342. ...


Affected infrastructure

Power generation

With the power fluctuations on the grid, power plants automatically went into "safe mode" to prevent damage in the case of an overload. This put much of the nuclear power normally available offline until those plants could be slowly taken out of "safe mode." In the meantime, the coal and oil fired plants were brought online, bringing some electrical power availability to the area by the morning of the 15th. Homes and businesses both in the affected area and in nearby areas were requested to limit power usage until the grid was back to full power.


Water supply

Some areas lost water pressure because pumps didn't have power. This loss of pressure caused potential contamination of the water supply. Four million customers of the Detroit water system in eight counties were under a boil water advisory until August 18. One county, Macomb, ordered all 2,300 restaurants closed until they were decontaminated after the advisory was lifted. Twenty people living on the St. Clair River claim to have been sickened after bathing in the river during the blackout. The accidental release of 140 kg (310 lb) of vinyl chloride from a Sarnia, Canada, chemical plant was not revealed until five days later. Cleveland also lost water pressure and instituted a boil water advisory. Cleveland and New York had sewage spills into waterways, requiring beach closures. Kingston lost power to sewage pumps, causing raw waste to be dumped into the Cataraqui River at the base of the Rideau Canal. Macomb County is a county in the U.S. state of Michigan. ... The St. ... Vinyl chloride, also known as chloroethene in IUPAC nomenclature, is an important industrial chemical chiefly used to produce its polymer, polyvinyl chloride (PVC). ... Sarnia is a city in Southwestern Ontario, Canada (population 70,876 in 2001). ... Kingston, Ontario, is a historic city in Ontario, Canada, located in the Quebec City-Windsor Corridor at the eastern end of Lake Ontario, where the lake runs into the St. ... A portion of the worlds largest skating rink Canal during Winter The Rideau Canal, also known as the Rideau Waterway, connects the city of Ottawa, Ontario on the Ottawa River to the city of Kingston, Ontario on Lake Ontario. ...


Transportation

A streetcar left stranded by the blackout in Toronto.
A streetcar left stranded by the blackout in Toronto.

Amtrak's Northeast Corridor railroad service was stopped north of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and all trains running into and out of New York City were shut down, initially including the Long Island Rail Road and the Metro-North Railroad; both were able to establish a bare-bones "all-diesel" service by the next morning. Canada's VIA Rail, which services New York City, suffered service delays, but most routes were still running, and normal service was resumed on most VIA routes by the next morning. Image File history File links Photographer: User:camerafiend File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links Photographer: User:camerafiend File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Acela Express in West Windsor, NJ Amtrak Cascades service with tilting Talgo trainsets in Seattle, Washington Amtrak train in downtown Orlando, Florida For other uses, see Amtrak (disambiguation). ... Most of the NEC is owned by Amtrak (those sections shown in red). ... Flag Seal Nickname: City of Brotherly Love, Philly, the Quaker City Motto: Philadelphia maneto (Let brotherly love continue) Location Location in Pennsylvania Coordinates , Government Country  State   County United States  Pennsylvania   Philadelphia Founded Incorporated October 27, 1682 October 25, 1701 Mayor John F. Street (D) Geographical characteristics Area     City 369. ... The Long Island Rail Road or LIRR (often referred to as the L-I-double-R) is a railroad that serves the length of Long Island, New York. ... Marble Hill station The Metro-North Railroad (officially the Metro-North Commuter Railroad Company, and usually abbreviated as Metro-North) is a suburban commuter railroad service between New York City to its northern suburbs in New York State and Connecticut. ... VIA Rail Canada (also referred to as VIA Rail and VIA; pronounced vee-ah) is an independent Crown corporation offering intercity passenger rail services in Canada. ...


Passenger screenings at affected airports ceased. Regional airports were shut down for this reason. In New York, flights were cancelled even after power had been restored to the airports because of difficulties accessing "electronic-ticket" information. Air Canada flights remained grounded on the morning of the 15th due to reliable power not having been restored to its Mississauga, Ontario, control center. It expected to resume operations by midday. This problem affected all Air Canada service and cancelled the most heavily traveled flights to Halifax and Vancouver. Air Canada Boeing 767-300 (C-GGFJ). ... Motto: Template:Unhide = Pride in our past, Faith in our future Location City Information Established: 1974 Area: 288. ... Motto: Template:Unhide = E Mari Merces (Wealth from the Sea) Logo: City Symbol: Kingfisher Location City Information Established: July 9, 1749 Area: (former city) 79. ... Vancouver (pronounced ) is a Canadian city in the province of British Columbia. ...


Many gas stations were unable to pump fuel due to lack of electricity. In North Bay, Ontario, for instance, a long line of transport trucks was held up, unable to go further west to Manitoba without refueling. In some cities, traffic problems were compounded by motorists who simply drove until their cars ran out of gas on the highway. Gas stations operating in pockets of Burlington, Ontario, that had power were reported to be charging prices up to 99.9 cents/liter when the going rate prior to the blackout was lower than 70 cents/liter. Customers still lined up for hours to pay prices most people considered unjustified by the blackout. Although part of the price hike was arguably due to price gouging, station operators could also claim that they had a limited supply of gasoline and did not know when their tanks would be refilled, prompting the drastic price increases. North Bay (, time zone EST) is a city in Northeastern Ontario, Canada (2001 population 52,771). ... Motto: Gloriosus et Liber (Latin: Glorious and free) Official languages English (French is an official language of the Manitoban legislature and courts) Flower Pasqueflower Capital Winnipeg Largest city Winnipeg Lieutenant-Governor John Harvard Premier Gary Doer (NDP) Parliamentary representation  - House seat  - Senate seats 14 6 Area Total  - Land  - Water    (% of... Burlington (2001 population 150,836)[1] is located in the Golden Horseshoe, across Lake Ontario and Burlington Bay harbour from Hamilton, in Halton Region, Ontario, Canada. ...


Many oil refineries on the East Coast of the United States shut down as a result of the blackout, and were slow to resume gasoline production. As a result, gasoline prices were expected to rise approximately 10 cents/gallon (3 c/L) in the United States. In Canada, gasoline rationing was also considered by the authorities. Rationing is the controlled distribution of resources and scarce goods or services: it restricts how much people are allowed to buy or consume. ...


Communication

Many people were very surprised to find that (unlike wired telephones) cellular communication devices were disrupted. Wired telephones continued to work, although some systems were overwhelmed by the volume of traffic. Many people who in prior blackouts would have relied on transistor radios for news discovered to some dismay that they no longer had one, having long since replaced them with portable CD players and other such devices. Most New York and many Ontario radio stations were momentarily knocked off the air but were able to return with backup power. The Regency TR-4 shown here is similar in appearance to the original Regency TR-1 model, but the TR-1 has a gold tuning knob and lettering. ...


Cable television systems were disabled, and areas that had power restored (and had power to their television sets) could not receive information until power had also been restored to the cable provider. Those who relied on the Internet were similarly disconnected from their news source for the duration of the blackout, with the exception of dialup access from laptop computers, which was widely reported to work until the battery would run out of charge. In telecommunication, the term dial-up has the following meanings: Dial-up access, typically to the Internet A service feature in which a user initiates service on a previously arranged trunk or transfers, without human intervention, from an active trunk to a standby trunk. ... Laptop with touchpad. ...


Amateur radio operators came in to pass emergency communications during the blackout. [10] Amateur radio, often called ham radio, is a hobby enjoyed by about 3 million people[1] throughout the world. ...


Industry

Large numbers of factories were closed in the affected area and others outside the area were forced to close or slow work because of supply problems and the need to conserve energy while the grid was stabilized. At one point a 7-hour wait developed for trucks crossing the Ambassador Bridge between Detroit and Windsor due to the lack of electronic border check systems. Freeway congestion in affected areas affected the "just-in-time" supply system. Some industry including the auto industry did not return to full production until August 22. The Ambassador Bridge is a privately-owned suspension bridge that connects Detroit, Michigan, in the United States, with Windsor, Ontario, in Canada. ... Motto: Speramus Meliora; Resurget Cineribus (We Hope For Better Things; It Shall Rise From the Ashes - this motto was adopted after the disastrous 1805 fire that devastated the city) Nickname: The Motor City and Motown Location in Wayne County, Michigan Founded Incorporated July 24, 1701 1815  County Wayne County Mayor... Flag Seal Motto: Location Coordinates , Government Country Province County Canada Ontario Essex* Founded 1854 (as village) 1892 (as city) City Mayor Governing Body Members of Parliament: Provincial Representatives: Eddie Francis Windsor City Council Joe Comartin (NDP) Brian Masse (NDP) Dwight Duncan (LIB) Sandra Pupatello (LIB) Geographical characteristics Area     City 120. ...


Looting

Incidents of looting were reported in Ottawa, Canada (notably in the suburb of Orleans where it appeared to be systematic) and Brooklyn, New York. Overall, there was only a small fraction of the looting and general civic disturbance seen in the New York City blackout of 1977. Looting (which derives via the Hindi lut from Sanskrit lunt, to rob), sacking, or plundering is the indiscriminate taking of goods by force as part of a military or political victory, or during a catastrophe or riot, such as during war [1], natural disaster [2], rioting [3], or terrorist attack... Orléans is a community in eastern Ontario, which became part of the city of Ottawa in 2001. ... TIME, July 25, 1977 The New York City Blackout of 1977 was a blackout that affected New York City on July 13–14, 1977. ...


By region

New York, USA

People walking in New York City during the blackout
People walking in New York City during the blackout

Almost the entire state of New York lost power. Exceptions include a few places on Long Island that relied on localized power plants; the southernmost areas of the Southern Tier of Upstate New York that relied on power from Pennsylvania; Starrett City, Brooklyn which has auxiliary power; and pockets of Amherst, in the Buffalo area, running off of University power. There were also some small pockets of power in the suburbs of Rochester, as a few smaller power companies operating in those areas were able to keep running. In New York, all prisons were blacked out and switched to generator power. The two Indian Point nuclear reactors on the Hudson River near Peekskill, the two reactors at Nine Mile Point nuclear plant, the single reactor at Ginna nuclear plant near Rochester and the FitzPatrick reactor near Oswego all shut down. With three other nuclear plants shutdown in Ohio, Michigan, and New Jersey, a total of nine reactors were impacted. The governor of New York State, George Pataki, declared a state of emergency. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1280x960, 196 KB) Photo taken in New York City during the 2003 North America blackout. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1280x960, 196 KB) Photo taken in New York City during the 2003 North America blackout. ... Flag Seal Nickname: Big Apple Location Location in the state of New York Government Counties (Boroughs) Bronx (The Bronx) New York (Manhattan) Queens (Queens) Kings (Brooklyn) Richmond (Staten Island) Mayor Michael Bloomberg (R) Geographical characteristics Area     City 1,214. ... Mercator projection of Long Island Long Island is an island in New York, USA. At 1,377 square miles (3567 km²) and is home to 7. ... The Southern Tier is a geographical term that refers to the counties of upstate New York State west of the Catskill Mountains along the northern border of Pennsylvania, with the exception of the counties in the far west of the state near the city of Buffalo. ... Upstate New York is the region of New York State outside of the core of the New York metropolitan area. ... Official language(s) None Capital Harrisburg Largest city Philadelphia Area  Ranked 33rd  - Total 46,055 sq mi (119,283 km²)  - Width 160 miles (255 km)  - Length 280 miles (455 km)  - % water 2. ... In 2003, Starrett City changed its name to the Spring Creek Towers. ... Amherst, named the safest town in America, is located in Erie County, New York, directly northeast of the City of Buffalo. ... Nickname: The Flour City, The Flower City, The Worlds Image Center Motto: Rochester: Made for Living Official website: www. ... The Indian Point nuclear power plant is located in Buchanan, New York just south of Peekskill, New York on the banks of the Hudson River approximately 35 miles north of New York City. ... The Hudson River, called Muh-he-kun-ne-tuk in Mahican, is a river running mainly through New York State but partly forming the boundary between the states of New York and New Jersey. ... Peekskill is a city located in Westchester County, New York. ... Oswego is a city located in Oswego County, New York. ... George Elmer Pataki (born June 24, 1945) is the current Governor of New York State, USA and has held that office since January 1995. ... A state of emergency is a governmental declaration that may suspend certain normal functions of government, may work to alert citizens to alter their normal behaviors, or may order government agencies to implement emergency preparedness plans. ...


Manhattan, including Wall Street and the United Nations, was completely shut down, as were all area airports, and all New York area rail transportation including the subway, the PATH lines between Manhattan and New Jersey, Metro North Railroad and the Long Island Rail Road. Hundreds of people were trapped in elevators; by late evening the New York City Fire Department had reportedly confirmed that all stalled elevators in approximately 800 Manhattan high-rise office and apartment buildings had been cleared. Over 600 subway and commuter rail cars were trapped between stations; the NY State Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey—which operates the PATH lines—reported that all passengers were evacuated without serious injury. However, PATH was first to resume subway service on Sixth Avenue (albeit on 15-minute headways) by 6PM that evening. The Borough of Manhattan, highlighted in yellow, lies between the East River and the Hudson River. ... View up Wall Street from Pearl Street NYSE and Broad Street view from Wall Street Wall Street is the name of a narrow street in lower Manhattan running east from Broadway downhill to the East River. ... United Nations - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia /**/ @import /skins-1. ... The New York City Subway system, a large rapid transit system operated by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) in New York City, is one of the most extensive public transportation systems in the world. ... Hoboken- and Newark-bound platform at Exchange Place station in Jersey City. ... Metro-North (officially MTA Metro-North Railroad) is a suburban commuter railroad running service from New York City to the northern suburbs in New York State and Connecticut. ... The Long Island Rail Road or LIRR (often referred to as the L-I-double-R) is a railroad that serves the length of Long Island, New York. ... The New York City Fire Department or the Fire Department of New York (FDNY) has the responsibility of protecting citizens and property in New York Citys five boroughs from fires and fire hazards, as well as first response to biological, chemical and radioactive hazards. ... The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is a bi-state agency (operated pursuant to an interstate compact) that runs most of the regional transportation infrastructure including the bridges, tunnels, airports and seaports within the New York-New Jersey Port District. ...


Without traffic lights, a gridlock was reported as persons in lower and midtown Manhattan fled their offices on foot; for hours into the evening the streets, highways, bridges and tunnels were jammed with traffic and pedestrians leaving Manhattan, though many civilians opted to help direct traffic. Mayor Michael Bloomberg advised residents to open their windows, drink plenty of liquids to avoid heat stroke in the heat, and not to forget their pets. Temperatures were 92°F (33°C) with high humidity, as New York had just experienced a record-breaking rain spell that had started at the end of July. With cell phone operation mostly stalled by circuit overloads, New Yorkers were lining up 10 deep or more at pay phones as ordinary telephone service remained largely unaffected. Gridlock is a term describing an inability to move on a transport network. ... Lower Manhattan skyline as viewed from the Staten Island Ferry Woolworth Building, looking south along Broadway Lower Manhattan, from the Brooklyn Bridge, 2005 Lower Manhattan is the southernmost part of the island of Manhattan, the main island and center of business and government of the City of New York. ... View of Midtown from Empire State Building. ... Michael Bloomberg Michael Rubens Mike Bloomberg (born February 14, 1942), a Republican, is a prominent Jewish American businessman, the founder of Bloomberg L.P., and the current Mayor of the City of New York. ... Hyperthermia is an acute condition resulting from excessive exposure to heat, it is also known as heat stroke or sunstroke. ...


While some commuters were able to find alternate sleeping arrangements, many were left stranded in New York and slept in parks and on the steps of public buildings. While practically all businesses and retail establishments closed down, many bars and pubs reported a brisk business as some New Yorkers took the opportunity to spend the evening "enjoying" the blackout.


40,000 police and the entire fire department were called in to maintain order. At least two fatalities were linked to the use of flames to provide light, and many nonfatal fires also resulted from the use of candles. The City's Office of Emergency Management activated the City's Emergency Operations Center, from which over 70 agencies coordinated response efforts which included delivery of portable light towers to unlit intersections, generators and diesel fuel to hospitals, and a portable steam generator necessary to power air conditioning units at the American Stock Exchange. A collection of lit candles on ornate candlesticks A close-up image of a candle showing the wick and the various regions of the flame. ... Originally formed in 1996 as part of the Mayors Office under Rudy Giuliani, the New York City Office of Emergency Management (OEM) became an independent agency, headed by a Commissioner who reports to the Mayor, by a vote of City residents in 2001. ...


Verizon's emergency generators failed several times, leaving the emergency services number 9-1-1 out of service for several periods of about a quarter hour each. The City's 311 information hotline received over 175,000 calls from concerned residents during the weekend. Amateur radio operators attached to New York City ARES provided a backup communications link to emergency shelters and hospitals. Amateur radio repeaters were supplied with emergency power via generators and batteries and remained functional. This article or section should include material from Bell Atlantic This article or section should include material from GTE Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ) is a local exchange telephone company formed by the merger of Bell Atlantic, a former Bell Operating Company, and GTE, which was the largest independant local exchange... Many countries public telephone networks have a single emergency telephone number, sometimes known as the universal emergency telephone number or occasionally the emergency services number, that allows a caller to contact local emergency services for assistance. ... 9-1-1 (nine-one-one) is the emergency telephone number for the North American Numbering Plan (NANP). ... In the United States, 3-1-1 is a non-emergency telephone number, meant to provide a quick, easy to remember, and universal alternative to 9-1-1. ... An amateur radio operator An amateur radio operator is an individual who has been assigned an amateur radio license by a governmental regulatory authority. ... The Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) Logo In the United States and Canada, the Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) is a corps of trained amateur radio operator volunteers organized to assist in public service and emergency communications. ... A repeater is an electronic device that receives a weak or low-level signal and retransmits it at a higher level or higher power, so that the signal can cover longer distances without degradation. ... Electrical generator Generator (Mathematics) ...


Many major U.S Networks (i.e CBS, NBC, ABC, and FOX), and some cable TV Networks like HBO, MTV, and Nickelodeon were mostly unable to broadcast because of the lack of electricity in the New York area, however a back-up station in Dallas, Texas and flagship transmitters there made it possible for prime-time television to be broadcasted. (ABC however chose not to do that and decided to cover the news from Washington DC during the blackout). CBS (formerly an acronym for Columbia Broadcasting System, the former legal name of the network) is one of the largest television networks, and formerly one of the largest radio networks, in the United States. ... The National Broadcasting Company or NBC is an American television broadcasting company based in New York Citys Rockefeller Center. ... The American Broadcasting Company (ABC) is a television and radio network in the United States. ... The Fox Broadcasting Company, usually referred to as just Fox (the company itself prefers the capitalized version FOX), is a television network in the United States. ... HBO (Home Box Office) is a premium cable television network with headquarters in New York City. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... This article is about the TV channel. ... Official language(s) None, English de facto Capital Albany Largest city New York City Area  Ranked 27th  - Total 54,520 sq mi (141,205 km²)  - Width 285 miles (455 km)  - Length 330 miles (530 km)  - % water 13. ... ·· Flag Seal Nickname: Big D Location Location in the state of Texas Government Counties Dallas County Collin County Denton County Kaufman County Rockwall County Mayor Laura Miller Geographical characteristics Area     City 997. ... The American Broadcasting Company (ABC) is a television and radio network in the United States. ... Flag Seal Nickname: DC, The District Motto: Justitia Omnibus (Justice for All) Location Location of Washington, D.C., with regard to the surrounding states of Maryland and Virginia. ...


For delayed effects at Niagara Falls, see below under Ontario. For other uses, see Niagara Falls (disambiguation). ...


New Jersey, USA

Affected areas included most of Hudson, Essex, Union, Passaic and Bergen Counties, including the major cities of Newark and Paterson. Power was returned first to the urban areas because of concerns of safety and unrest. The skyline of Jersey City, as seen from Lower New York Bay. ... Essex County is a county located in the northeastern part of the state of New Jersey. ... Union County is a county located in the state of New Jersey. ... Passaic County is a county located in the state of New Jersey. ... Bergen County is the most populous county of the state of New Jersey, United States. ... Flag Seal Nickname: The Brick City Location Map of Newark in Essex County Coordinates , Government County Essex Founded/Incorporated 1666/1836 Mayor Cory Booker, 1st Term: 2006 - 2010 Geographical characteristics Area     City km²  (26. ... The skyline of Paterson, New Jersey, showing the canyon of the Passaic River in the foreground. ...


The day following the blackout, August 15, the New Jersey Turnpike stopped collecting tolls until 9:00 a.m. The New Jersey Turnpike is a toll road in New Jersey and is one of the most heavily traveled highways in the United States. ...


Connecticut, USA

Parts of New London County, New Haven County, Litchfield County and Fairfield County, from Greenwich to Danbury and Bridgeport, were affected, although most of the rest of the state had power all evening, aside from a few momentary interruptions that caused computers to reboot. Metro North trains stopped, and remained on the tracks for hours until they could be towed to the nearest station.


A local controversy ensued in the days after the blackout, when the Federal government ordered the HVDC Cross Sound Cable between New Haven and Long Island turned on. This cable had been installed, but had not been activated due to environmental and fisheries concerns. The Attorney General of Connecticut, Richard Blumenthal, and the Governor of New York, George Pataki, traded insults over the cable. Most Connecticut politicians expressed their outrage that the cable was being turned on, since it did not help anyone in Connecticut, as the cable would transport power from Connecticut to Long Island. HVDC or high-voltage, direct current electric power transmission systems contrast with the more common alternating-current systems as a means for the bulk transmission of electrical power. ... The Cross Sound Cable is a 40 kilometer (about 24. ... Mercator projection of Long Island Long Island is an island in New York, USA. At 1,377 square miles (3567 km²) and is home to 7. ...


Massachusetts, USA

A small area of extreme western Massachusetts was affected. Worcester endured power dips sufficient to reboot some computers, but was otherwise unaffected. Nickname: The Heart of the Commonwealth, The City of the Seven Hills, Wormtown, Woo-town, Wortown (war-town), The City of Diners, Paris of the Eighties Settled: 1673 â€“ Incorporated: 1684 Zip Code(s): 01608 â€“ Area Code(s): 508 / 774 Official website: http://www. ...


Michigan, USA

About 2.3 million households and businesses, which included all of Metro Detroit as well as Lansing, Ann Arbor, and surrounding communities in southeast Michigan were affected. TV stations were temporarily knocked off the air and water supplies were disrupted in Detroit due to the failure of electric pumps. Because of the loss of water pressure all water was required to be boiled before use until August 18. Several schools which had planned to begin the school year August 18 were closed until clean water was available. A Marathon Oil refinery in Melvindale near Detroit suffered a small explosion from gas buildup, necessitating an evacuation within one mile around the plant and the closure of Interstate 75. Officials feared the release of toxic gases. Heavy rains on Friday coupled with the lack of sewage pumps closed other expressways and prompted urban flood warnings. Untreated sewage flowed into local rivers in Lansing and Metropolitan Detroit as contingency solutions at some sewage treatment plants failed. In the midst of a summer heat wave, Michiganders were deprived of air conditioning. Several people, mostly elderly individuals, had to be treated for symptoms of heat stroke. Metro Detroit is the U.S. metropolitan area surrounding the city of Detroit, Michigan, including Pontiac, and other outlying cities, villages, and townships. ... Flag Seal Location Location in Ingham County, Michigan1 Coordinates , Government Country State County United States Michigan Ingham, Eaton, Clinton Mayor Virg Bernero (D) Geographical characteristics Area     City 35. ... For the railroad company, see Ann Arbor Railroad. ... Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE: MRO), based in Houston, Texas, is a worldwide oil and natural gas exploration and production company. ... Melvindale is a city located in Wayne County, Michigan. ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... Michigander (mish-uh-GAN-der) is a demonym for residents of the State of Michigan. ... Note: in the broadest sense, air conditioning can refer to any form of heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning. ... Hyperthermia is an acute condition resulting from excessive exposure to heat, it is also known as heat stroke or sunstroke. ...


The influential protopunk band Iggy Pop & The Stooges were scheduled to play their homecoming reunion show in Detroit on the night of the blackout. The show was rescheduled for later in the month; many Stooges fans quipped that the blackout had been caused when guitarist Ron Asheton was playing his guitar during soundcheck, a joke immortalized in the liner notes of a DVD of the rescheduled concert. Ironically, the venue the Stooges were playing at, DTE Energy Music Theatre, is owned by the local electric power company DTE Energy Co. At the rescheduled show, lead singer Iggy Pop ordered over the microphone that all of the house lights be turned off during the closing minutes of "TV Eye", in emulation of the blackout. Protopunk is a term used to describe a number of performers who were important precursors of punk rock, or who have been cited by early punk rockers as influential. ... The Stooges are an American rock band that was first active from about 1967 to 1974, and then reformed in 2003. ... Not to be confused with The Three Stooges. ... The DTE Energy Music Theatre (originally Pine Knob Music Theatre) is a 15,274-seat amphitheater located in Independence Township, Michigan. ... DTE Energy Co. ... James Newell Osterberg, Jr. ...


Ohio, USA

Over 540,000 homes and businesses were without power. In Cleveland, water service stopped because the city is supplied by electric pumps and backup electricity was available only on a very limited basis. Portions of the cities of Akron, Mansfield, Marion and Ashland were without power. Cleveland declared a curfew on all persons under the age of 18. At Cedar Point Amusement Park in Sandusky, park employees had to help guests walk down the steps of the 200-foot-tall Magnum XL-200 rollercoaster, which had stopped on the lift hill due to the blackout. Nickname The Rubber Capital of the World Location Location within the state of Ohio Government Country State County United States Ohio Summit Mayor Don Plusquellic (D) Geographical characteristics Area  - City    - Land    - Water 161. ... Downtown Mansfield Mansfield is the largest city and county seat of Richland County, Ohio. ... Marion is a city located in Marion County, Ohio. ... Ashland is a city located in Ashland County, Ohio. ... A curfew can be one of the following: An order by the government for certain persons to return home before a certain time. ... Cedar Point is a 364 acre (1. ... Muddy brown water fills Sandusky Bay, just south of Lake Erie in this astronaut photograph. ... The Magnum XL-200 was the worlds first hyper coaster. ...


Ontario, Canada

Volunteer directing traffic in Toronto, Ontario during the blackout
Volunteer directing traffic in Toronto, Ontario during the blackout
Toronto Union Station during the blackout
Toronto Union Station during the blackout

Traffic lights, the subway and streetcars, the Toronto Stock Exchange, the CBC's Toronto studios, and Toronto Pearson International Airport were shut down in Toronto. (CBC switched to its backup studios in both Calgary and Vancouver for coverage because newsgathering in Toronto was extremely difficult due to limited power in the Canadian Broadcasting Centre. CBC.ca remained online during the blackout as it was protected by UPS systems.) Many passengers had to be evacuated from subway trains by walking through the tunnels. Major Toronto hospitals reported that they had switched to generators and hadn't experienced problems. The 9-1-1 system was operational. Highway 407, the world's first all-electronic toll highway, was gridlocked with passengers hoping to get a free ride. Parliament Hill was evacuated in Ottawa. Image File history File links Blackout: volunteer traffic cop on Bay and Adelade Streets, Toronto, Ontario, Canada during 2003 North American Blackout (c) Jason Pang 2003 File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links Blackout: volunteer traffic cop on Bay and Adelade Streets, Toronto, Ontario, Canada during 2003 North American Blackout (c) Jason Pang 2003 File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Motto: Ut Incepit Fidelis Sic Permanet (Latin: Loyal she began, loyal she remains) Official languages English (French has some legal status but is not fully co-official) Flower White trillium Capital Toronto Largest city Toronto Lieutenant-Governor James K. Bartleman Premier Dalton McGuinty (Liberal) Parliamentary representation  - House seat  - Senate seats... Image File history File links Blackout: Interior of Toronto Union Station during the 2003 North American Blackout (c) Jason Pang 2003 File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links Blackout: Interior of Toronto Union Station during the 2003 North American Blackout (c) Jason Pang 2003 File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... The Toronto Transit Commission, or TTC, is a public transport authority that operates buses, streetcars, and rapid transit lines in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. ... TSX logo The Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) is Canadas largest stock exchange, North Americas third largest stock exchange, and the sixth largest in the world. ... The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), a Canadian crown corporation, is the countrys national radio and television broadcaster. ... Toronto Pearson International Airport, or Toronto/Lester B. Pearson International Airport (IATA: YYZ, ICAO: CYYZ), straddling Mississaugas northeastern boundary with neighbouring Toronto, is Canadas busiest airport and part of the National Airports System. ... Motto: Heart of the new west Area: 712. ... Vancouver (pronounced ) is a Canadian city in the province of British Columbia. ... The Canadian Broadcasting Centre The Canadian Broadcasting Centre is the broadcast headquarters of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporations television and radio services. ... 9-1-1 or nine-one-one is the emergency telephone number for the North American Numbering Plan (NANP). ... This article or section should include material from 407 ETR International Highway 407 as part of the 400-series network Highway 407, officially called 407 ETR, is a pay-per-use freeway located in south-central Ontarios Greater Toronto Area. ... Centre Block, Parliament Hill, Ottawa, Canada Parliament Hill, (French Colline du Parlement), -The Hill for locals- is a scenic location on the banks of the Ottawa River in downtown Ottawa, Canada. ...


Toronto officials were asking residents to curtail unnecessary use of water, as the pumps were not working and there was only a 24-hour supply.


Traffic lights, having no backup power, were all knocked out. Coupled with the beginning of the evening rush hour, this caused traffic chaos. In many major and minor intersections in both large and small cities, such as Toronto and Burlington respectively, ordinary citizens began directing traffic until police or others relieved them. While there are not enough police officers to direct traffic at every intersections during the afternoon rush hours, passing police officers distributed fluorescent jackets to people who were directing traffic. Drivers and pedestrians generally followed the instructions from them even though they were not police officers.


Fierce disruptions of truck traffic in northeastern Ontario were reported due to the unavailability of fuel, including the backlog near North Bay. The tunnel between Windsor and Detroit was also closed. North Bay (, time zone EST) is a city in Northeastern Ontario, Canada (2001 population 52,771). ... Flag Seal Motto: Location Coordinates , Government Country Province County Canada Ontario Essex* Founded 1854 (as village) 1892 (as city) City Mayor Governing Body Members of Parliament: Provincial Representatives: Eddie Francis Windsor City Council Joe Comartin (NDP) Brian Masse (NDP) Dwight Duncan (LIB) Sandra Pupatello (LIB) Geographical characteristics Area     City 120. ...


About 140 miners were marooned underground in the Falconbridge mine in Sudbury when the power went out. Mine officials said that they were safe and could be evacuated if necessary, but were not being evacuated due to the risks of doing so with no power. They were safely evacuated by the morning. In Sarnia, a refinery scrubber lost power and released above-normal levels of pollution; residents were asked to close their windows. Falconbridge Limited is Toronto, Ontario based resource company involved in the exploration, mining, processing and marketing of metal and mineral products including nickel, copper, cobalt and platinum. ... Greater Sudbury (2001 census population 155,219) is a city in Northern Ontario. ... Sarnia is a city in Southwestern Ontario, Canada (population 70,876 in 2001). ... A refinery is a building and/or the equipment used for refining or processing specific products. ...


In the evening of August 14, Ontario premier Ernie Eves declared a state of emergency, advising nonessential personnel not to go to work on August 15 (a Friday). Residents were asked not to use televisions, washing machines, or air conditioners if possible, and warned that some restored power might go off again. Although the full state of emergency was lifted the next day (a Saturday), residents were warned that the normal amount of power would not be available for days, and were still asked to reduce power consumption. August 14 is the 226th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (227th in leap years), with 139 days remaining. ... Ernest Eves (born June 17, 1946) was the twenty-third Premier of the province of Ontario, Canada, from April 15, 2002, to October 23, 2003. ... August 15 is the 227th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (228th in leap years), with 138 days remaining. ...


The Toronto Transit Commission operated its streetcars on the Friday, but not on the weekend, and did not reactivate the subway and RT until Monday, August 18, after assurances were received that they would be exempted from any rotating blackouts that might be needed. Major events such as concerts were canceled for several days, and the opening of the Canadian National Exhibition, scheduled for the 15th, was postponed to Tuesday, August 19. The Toronto Transit Commission, or TTC, is a public transport authority that operates buses, streetcars, and rapid transit lines in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. ... August 18 is the 230th day of the year (231st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Early CNE midway sign A pair of CNE Magic Passes Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) is an annual event held at Exhibition Place in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. ... August 19 is the 231st day of the year (232nd in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar. ...


For two days of this recovery period, diversion of water from the Niagara River for hydroelectric generation was increased to the maximum level, normally used only at night and in winter in order to maintain the scenic appearance of Niagara Falls. The resultant drop in the river level below the falls meant that the Maid of the Mist tour boats could not dock safely, and their operation had to be suspended. View from near Horseshoe Falls looking across the Niagara River toward Rainbow Bridge in winter Niagara Glens features many treacherous rapids downstream of Niagara Falls The Niagara River flows to the north from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario. ... Hydroelectric dam diagram The waters of Llyn Stwlan, the upper reservoir of the Ffestiniog Pumped-Storage Scheme in north Wales, can just be glimpsed on the right. ... For other uses, see Niagara Falls (disambiguation). ... Maid of the Mist at the American Falls The Maid of the Mist is a boat tour of Niagara Falls. ...


The Petro-Canada refinery in Oakville had to perform an emergency shutdown due to the lack of power. The plant's flare system produced large flames during the shutdown, leading to erroneous reports in the media that there had been a fire in the plant. Petro-Canada is a Canadian oil and gas firm headquartered in Calgary, Alberta. ... A refinery is a building and/or the equipment used for refining or processing specific products. ... Motto: Template:Unhide = Avancez (Go forward). ...


Emergency Services

In New York, about 3,000 fire calls were reported,many from people using candles. Emergency services responded to 80,000 calls for help, more than double the average.


Fatalities

The blackout contributed to at least eight fatalities,

  • In Ottawa, two fatalities occurred, a pedestrian hit by a car and a fire victim, although the blackout cannot be solely identified as the reason. [11]
  • In Connecticut, one fatality was reported.
  • In New York City, five fatalities were reported. Two were deaths from carbon monoxide, two were deaths from fire, and the fifth was a fall from a roof while breaking into a shoe store.

Motto: Template:Unhide = Advance Ottawa/Ottawa en avant Location City Information Established: 1850 as Bytown Area: 2,778. ... Official language(s) English Capital Hartford Largest city Bridgeport Area  Ranked 48th  - Total 5,549 sq. ... Flag Seal Nickname: Big Apple Location Location in the state of New York Government Counties (Boroughs) Bronx (The Bronx) New York (Manhattan) Queens (Queens) Kings (Brooklyn) Richmond (Staten Island) Mayor Michael Bloomberg (R) Geographical characteristics Area     City 1,214. ...

Long term effects

The Ontario government fell in a provincial election held in October 2003; power had long been a major issue. The government may have been hurt by the success of Quebec and Manitoba, which were not affected whereas Ontario was shut down. The extra publicity given to Ontario's need to import electricity from the United States, mostly due to a decision of the government not to expand the province's power generating capabilities, may also have adversely affected the Conservative government. Premier Ernie Eves' handling of the crisis was also criticized; he was not heard from until long after Mayor Bloomberg and Governor Pataki had spoken out. Due to the regular announcements he gave in the days following the blackout, Eves enjoyed a moderate increase in the polls that his party took as a sign of an opportunity to call an election they could win, however that did not prove to be the case. Motto: Je me souviens (French: I remember) Official languages French Flower White garden lily Capital Quebec City Largest city Montreal Lieutenant-Governor Lise Thibault Premier Jean Charest (PLQ) Parliamentary representation  - House seat  - Senate seats 75 24 Area Total  - Land  - Water    (% of total)  Ranked 2nd 1,542,056 km² 1,183... Motto: Gloriosus et Liber (Latin: Glorious and free) Official languages English (French is an official language of the Manitoban legislature and courts) Flower Pasqueflower Capital Winnipeg Largest city Winnipeg Lieutenant-Governor John Harvard Premier Gary Doer (NDP) Parliamentary representation  - House seat  - Senate seats 14 6 Area Total  - Land  - Water    (% of... Ernest Eves (born June 17, 1946) was the twenty-third Premier of the province of Ontario, Canada, from April 15, 2002, to October 23, 2003. ... Map of Ontarios ridings and their popular vote for their party elected The Ontario general election of 2003 was held on October 2, 2003, to elect the 103 members of the Legislative Assembly (Members of Provincial Parliament, or MPPs) of the Province of Ontario, Canada. ...


In the United States, the effects may be even more profound, as the George W. Bush administration has emphasized the need for changes to the U.S. national energy policy, Critical Infrastructure Protection, and Homeland Security. During the blackout, most systems that would detect unauthorized border crossings, port landings, or detect unauthorized access to many vulnerable sites, failed. There was considerable fear that future blackouts would be exploited for terrorism. In addition, the failure highlighted the ease with which the power grid could be taken down. George Walker Bush (born July 6, 1946) is an American businessman and politician, was elected in 2000 as the 43rd President of the United States of America, re-elected in 2004, and is currently serving his second term in that office. ... Category: ... Homeland security refers to domestic governmental actions designed to prevent, detect, respond to, and recover from acts of terrorism, and also respond to natural disasters. ... Terrorism refers to a strategy of using violence, or threat of violence to generate fear, cause disruption, and ultimately, to bring about compliance with specific political, religious, ideological, and personal demands. ...


Restoration of service

By evening of August 14, power had been restored to:

Con Edison retracted its claim that New York City would have power by 1 a.m. that night, and predicted that the Niagara Falls area would have to wait until 8 a.m. Motto: Building Community. ... The census divisions that constitute the original Golden Horseshoe appear in red on the map. ... St. ... Burlington (2001 population 150,836)[1] is located in the Golden Horseshoe, across Lake Ontario and Burlington Bay harbour from Hamilton, in Halton Region, Ontario, Canada. ... Flag Nickname: The Forest City Location Coordinates , Government Country Province County Canada Ontario Middlesex County Settled Incorporated 1826 (as village) 1855 (as city) City Mayor Governing Body MPs MPPs Anne Marie DeCicco London City Council Sue Barnes (LPC) Joe Fontana (LPC) Irene Mathyssen (NDP) Joe Preston (CPC) Chris Bentley (OLP... Looking north along Kanatas March Road Kanata was a suburban city just west of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada until it was merged with Ottawa in 2001 to become a part of the new city of Ottawa. ... Official language(s) None, English de facto Capital Trenton Largest city Newark Area  Ranked 47th  - Total 8,729 sq mi (22,608 km²)  - Width 70 miles (110 km)  - Length 150 miles (240 km)  - % water 14. ... Mercator projection of Long Island Long Island is an island in New York, USA. At 1,377 square miles (3567 km²) and is home to 7. ... Flag Seal Location Location in Albany County and the State of New York Coordinates , Government Country   State     County United States   New York     Albany Founded Incorporated 1614 1686 Mayor Gerald D. Jennings Geographical characteristics Area     City 56. ... New London County is located in the southeastern corner of the state of Connecticut. ... Consolidated Edison Company of New York (NYSE: ED) (Con Edison, or Con Ed) is a utility company in New York state, USA. Con Edison is a regulated utility that provides electric service in New York City and most of Westchester County, New York. ... Niagara Falls, New York, Rainbow Bridge and the American Falls from Skylon Tower in Niagara Falls, Ontario. ...


By early evening, two New York airports and Cleveland airport were back in service.


Half of the affected part of Ontario had power by the morning of August 15, though even in areas where it had come back online, some services were still disrupted or running at lower levels. The last areas to regain power were usually suffering from trouble at local electrical substations that was not directly related to the blackout itself.


By August 16, power was fully restored in New York and Toronto. However, Toronto's subway and streetcars remained out of service until August 18th to prevent the possibility of equipment being stuck in awkward locations if the power was interrupted again. Power had been mostly restored in Ottawa, though authorities warned of possible additional disruptions and advised conservation as power continued to be restored to other areas. Ontarians were asked to reduce their electricity use by 50% until all generating stations can be brought back on line. Four remained out of service on the 19th. Illuminated billboards were largely dormant for the week following the blackout, and many stores had only a portion of their lights on. Those who did not engage in electricity conservation were treated with derision and scorn from fellow citizens. Among these were the news television stations that had many lights, TV screens, and sets fully working, the CHUM Network to note.


Preparations against the possible disruptions threatened by the Year 2000 problem have been credited for the installation of new electrical equipment and systems which allowed for a relatively rapid restoration of power in some areas. The Year 2000 problem (also known as the Y2K problem, the millennium bug and the Y2K Bug) was the result of a practice in computer program design that caused some date-related processing to operate incorrectly for dates and times on and after January 1, 2000. ...


Conspiracy theories

Many have theorized that the black out was a test to check the preparation of the United States against a terrorist attack on the nation's electrical grid. The timing of the event was the first indication: the outage hit New York City and thus the financial headquarters shortly after 4 PM, or the stock market close, so as not to disturb the financial markets. Also, smoke came billowing out of one of the power stations in Manhattan, initially giving people the impression that a terrorist attack had occured. The subsequent power outages over the following few weeks in England and Italy, both of which were the biggest US allies in the "war on terror," gave additional ammunition to those who argued that the US power outage was an intentional act of the government.


See also

A power outage is the loss of the electricity supply to an area. ...

External links

News stories

August 19 is the 231st day of the year (232nd in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar. ... 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... August 18 is the 230th day of the year (231st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... August 15 is the 227th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (228th in leap years), with 138 days remaining. ... 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... August 15 is the 227th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (228th in leap years), with 138 days remaining. ... 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... August 15 is the 227th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (228th in leap years), with 138 days remaining. ... 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... August 14 is the 226th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (227th in leap years), with 139 days remaining. ... 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... November 19 is the 323rd day of the year (324th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar. ... 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ...

Other links


  Results from FactBites:
 
2003 North America blackout - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (5878 words)
The 2003 North America flout was a massive power outage which occurred throughout parts of the northeastern United States and eastern Canada on Thursday, August 14, 2003.
Those who relied on the Internet were similarly disconnected from their news source for the duration of the flout, with the exception of dialup access from laptop computers, which was widely reported to work until the battery would run out of charge.
The show was rescheduled for later in the month; many Stooges fans quipped that the flout had been caused when guitarist Ron Asheton was playing his guitar during soundcheck, a joke immortalized in the liner notes of a DVD of the rescheduled concert.
2003 North America blackout - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (5870 words)
The operators of the power system control center are responsible for ensuring that they balance the supply of power, the loads (customers demanding that power), and the transmission line capacity, so that their system was in a state where no single fault can cause it to fail.
Many people who in prior flouts would have relied on transistor radios for news discovered to some dismay that they no longer had one, having long since replaced them with portable CD players and other such devices.
Metro North trains stopped, and remained on the tracks for hours until they could be towed to the nearest station.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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