Friday, December 3

Is it possible for a “big blackout” to occur in various regions? | Digital Trends Spanish


In the past, the Austrian Armed Forces warned of some threats to the national city: a terrorist attack, cyber attacks and the pandemic, and they were correct in each of their predictions.

But now the Austrian government body has warned of another risk that could impact the nation: a major indefinite power blackout (via The reason).

After having supervised the military maneuvers and actions, Klaudia Tanner, the Austrian Defense Minister, has warned that there is a high possibility of an electrical blackout, and this would not occur only in that country, but would spread throughout the European territory.

“The question is not if there will be a big blackout, but when,” said the minister, who also stated that this danger “underestimated by all” could have catastrophic consequences.

A blackout would shut down the internet, computers, mobile phones, traffic lights, ATMs and the electrical supply in our homes, that is, everything we use in our daily lives. Hospitals could even be without power in a matter of hours, causing the death of thousands of patients who are assisted with the equipment of the place.

In any case, this would not be the first time that a massive power outage has occurred, in 1989 one was generated in Quebec, Canada. However, the authorities never confirmed the specific cause and simply suggested that it was probably caused by technical failures or overloads due to high power demand.

On the other hand, in the first half of 2019, failures at the Simón Bolívar Hydroelectric Plant caused extensive power cuts in Venezuela, and in that same year a blackout also occurred in Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay. These countries suffered a massive power outage that lasted almost 13 hours, which was caused by an error that took a high-voltage line out of service and affected some 50 million people.

And more recently, earlier this year to be precise, much of Pakistan’s 210 million people were left in the dark by a problem in the central town of Guddu.

“What to do when everything stops”

To raise awareness among citizens, the Austrian government has decided to launch a campaign that will run throughout the month. This is not only being published in the media, more than six thousand posters have also been distributed in Austrian cities and the minister even wanted to spread it in their social networks.

The slogan of the campaign in question is “What to do when everything stops”, and its objective is to make the population aware of the measures they can take when the blackout occurs. The campaign gives advice to the population suggesting that they buy enough food for several days and that they get fuel, candles, batteries and plenty of drinking water.

Basically, what the Austrian Army recommends is that people have a reservation equivalent to two weeks of camping in their homes, in addition to agreeing a meeting point with family and friends and trying to collaborate with neighbors as much as possible by creating a network Communication.

On the other hand, Austria has already put in place a plan to make all its barracks self-sufficient by 2025. Lieutenant Colonel Pierre Kugelweis explained to EFE that, in the event of a similar incident, the barracks would serve as a support base for firefighters, health workers and other organizations.

In the last 18 months, the Army has carried out several maneuvers to prepare an adequate response to this situation, carrying out tests to identify how to improve coordination with the police and other organizations.

Likewise, Kugelweis stated that “from 2025 there should be enough barracks in all federal states to guarantee the Army’s response in the event of a blackout.”

“A blackout is a threat with a great impact on society. And it is important that all emergency services, such as police, ambulances or fire, continue to function. In the event of a blackout, the main task of the Armed Forces is to supply and support other emergency organizations, ”said Lieutenant Colonel.

The military warned of the pandemic in 2017 with a document outlining the risks in the next decade. So to prepare for the next blackout they are using the same data analysis process that was used to forecast the pandemic. This will serve as the basis for “the extensive preparations of the Armed Forces in the face of the effects of a possible blackout.”

The Interior Ministry, Karl Nehammer, who said that a blackout was “one of the greatest threats to a modern state”, has also developed a protocol for the first moments of a blackout. This is focused on reinforcing the deployment of the police to discourage any temptation to loot, in addition to regulating traffic in the foreseeable fall of traffic lights and reinforcing the surveillance of sensitive infrastructures.

There is no way of knowing when the blackout will actually occur, but at least Austria is already preparing, and the rest of the countries should follow in their footsteps if they want to deal with such a situation in the best way.

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