.contact us |.about us
News > International News ... ...
Italy gets power back after massive blackout
( 2003-09-29 21:49) (Agencies)

 Italy got its power fully back on Monday after a nationwide blackout plunged millions into darkness.

 As engineers worked to keep the network up after Sunday's outage, politicians said Italy had received a wake-up call to kick-start economic reforms including measures to boost power generation and reduce dependence on foreign power supplies.

 The head of Italy's grid system told Reuters power had been fully restored across the country but targeted power cuts were planned to avoid overloading the network.

 "We are planning precautionary cuts to reduce demand so that it meets the availability (of power)," Andrea Bollino, chairman of the national grid company GRTN, said on Monday.

 Authorities attributed the outage to a breakdown of electricity lines, some in heavy storms, from France and Switzerland -- neighbours supplying Italy some 17 percent of its power. But they disagreed on who was to blame.

 Almost all of Italy's 57 million people were affected by Sunday's blackout, a scale similar to last month's collapse in the US Northeast and Canada.

 Four deaths were unofficially attributed to the outage which struck at 3" GRTN blamed the blackout on problems in the Swiss and French networks. Italian Industry Minister Antonio Marzano called for an investigation.


 Swiss power firm ATEL said a tree, uprooted by strong winds, had knocked out a line carrying power to Italy over the Alps. But it said that alone could not block power to all of Italy, and blamed Italy's power grid for not reacting swiftly enough.

 It was the fourth major Western blackout in two months, after cuts in North America, parts of London and Scandinavia.

 The four deaths included a man killed in a traffic accident at an intersection where the lights had failed, an elderly woman burned by candles that fell on her, and two elderly women who fell down stairs in the dark.

 About 110 trains were stranded when the power went out and hundreds of people were trapped in elevators across the country.

 The overall impact was muted, with most people asleep and emergency generators kicking in for hospitals and key services.

 Authorities said the impact would have been much greater had the blackout occurred on a work day.

 Retail trade association Confcommercio said the food industry alone lost about 120 million euros ($138 million) of business and frozen food.

 The blackout hit all of Italy except the island of Sardinia and some small pockets of the mainland, officials said.

 Marzano urged the government to call a vote on a bill to supply 12,000 more megawatts of power -- a quarter of Italy's actual capacity. But new plants face stiff opposition from environmentalists.

 The head of the lower house of parliament said the power collapse showed how Italy had failed to reform its economy in the past and there was no more time to lose.

 "The blackout...must not become a metaphor for a country which is sliding towards chronic delays," Pier Ferdinando Casini told the newspaper Corriere della Sera in an interview.

 The national grid operator said it was the biggest blackout since 1994 in Italy, which suffered several outages this summer as temperatures soared.

  Today's Top News   Top International News
+Suspects detained in massive sex scandal
( 2003-09-28)
+China unveils anti-SARS taskforce
( 2003-09-29)
+China beats Russia 1-0 to top Group D
( 2003-09-29)
+HK-mainland sign annexes to flesh out CEPA trade accord
( 2003-09-29)
+New plan to ease traffic congestion
( 2003-09-28)
+Iran says IAEA inspections will be limited
( 2003-09-29)
+Italy gets power back after massive blackout
( 2003-09-29)
+US forces attacked west of Baghdad
( 2003-09-29)
+Much Iraqi defector information unusable-NY Times
( 2003-09-29)
+Warning on leg-lengthening surgery
( 2003-09-29)
  Go to Another Section  
  Article Tools  
  Related Articles  

+Italian blackout cuts short Rome all-night party

+Italy grinds to halt in nationwide power blackout

+Millions without power in Denmark, Sweden

+Blackouts hit domestic and commercial users

+Shedding light on blackout's cause

+US: Michigan officials ready to answer blackout questions

+Power outage causes mess on London trains

+NY back from blackout as regulators seek cause


+Utility: All power back in New York City

+Blackout in US stretches into second day

+Blackout stretches into second hot night

+Canada uncertain over cause of blackout

+Canada officials blame US for blackout

+Asia Markets: stocks mixed as outage ignored

+Bush assures americans after power outage

+Largest-ever blackout hits eastern US

+Study uncovers US media blackout: China Youth Daily

+Blackout hits New York, Northeast US

        .contact us |.about us
  Copyright By chinadaily.com.cn. All rights reserved