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Ecuador Plunges Into Darkness, Power Outage Disrupts Subway Operations, Water Supplies

The South American nation of Ecuador was hit by a nationwide power outage that left 18 million people without electricity.

The outage was caused by a faulty power line, which plunged the whole nation into darkness, and even the traffic lights were non-functional. The capital’s subways also came to a halt. The power was only restored by Wednesday afternoon.

Public Works Minister Roberto Luque, who is in charge of the energy ministry, in a post on X said that 95% of the service was back by Wednesday afternoon.

The Minister also added that it was another example of the power crisis that the Ecuador was facing. The nation is grappling with insufficient power generation that has led to unscheduled service cuts.

Massive Power Outage Paralyzes Ecuador, Leaving 18 Million Without Electricity

The minister blamed the power outage on Wednesday on insufficient investment in transmission, and the situation could have been avoided. The minister also traced the power outage to a transmission line failure that caused “a cascade disconnection.”

Quito Mayor Pabel Muñoz dubbed Wednesday’s power outage as “major,” explaining: “it even knocked out power to the metro, which has its separate system.”

The nation is facing a severe power shortage, and in April, President Daniel Noboa declared an energy emergency and announced planned electricity cuts.

Residents of Ecuador who were used to long electricity cuts were surprised by the blackout, which happened all over the country.

Emilia Cevallos, a waitress in a restaurant north of the capital, Quito, said, “We thought it was only in this sector, but when we left we realized that while some stores had connected generators, the majority did not have electricity. The traffic lights were not working either.”

A hairdresser, Diana Rosales, who was cutting a client’s hair when the power outage happened, lamented that the situation is turning from bad to worse, especially when the residents are paying hefty energy bills.

Access to drinking water was also suspended in some areas since the power to run the pumps was not functional. Night classes were also suspended across the nation. The nation gets a major portion of its power from neighboring Colombia.

The outage led to dangerous traffic conditions with street lights and traffic signals not functioning. The capital’s subway services were also interrupted for several hours.

The Latin American nation Ecuador gets a major portion of its power from hydroelectricity. However, a prolonged drought aggravated the power situation. This was followed by heavy rains over the weekend, forcing officials to take three hydroelectric plants offline.

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Manoj Nair

Manoj Nair: With a decade of news writing across various media platforms, Manoj is a seasoned professional. His dual role as an English teacher underscores his command over communication. He adeptly covers Politics, Technology, Crypto, and more, reflecting a broad and insightful perspective that engages and informs diverse audiences.

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