Failure on National Grid network affects train services and road users
Large parts of England and Wales have been left without electricity following a major power cut, electricity network operators have said, with a serious impact reported on rail and road services, including city traffic lights.
Passengers were shut out of some of the country’s busiest train stations during the Friday evening rush hour, while hundreds of thousands of homes were left without electricity after what the National Grid described as a problem with two generators.
The British Transport police said officers were asked to help as services on the east coast mainline were suspended, with many customers being advised not to travel; and London’s Euston station, the southern hub for the west coast mainline, was closed because of “exceptionally high passenger numbers”. The outage was reportedly also affecting other rail services and traffic lights.
Shortly before 6.30pm, a National Grid spokesperson said the generator issues had caused “loss of power in selected UK areas”. The spokesperson said the issue was “now resolved” and the system had returned to normal.
About 500,000 customers in Wales, south-west England and the Midlands were affected and 300,000 customers in south-east England were left without power, the local distributors said. A further 110,000 in Yorkshire and north-east England were affected, alongside about 26,000 in north-west England, according to the electricity distributors in those areas.
There won’t be at the moment – all lines are blocked between London and Welwyn. Will update you as soon as I can.
— Hull Trains (@Hull_Trains) August 9, 2019
Enappsys, an energy consultancy, said the blackout may have been caused by the unexpected shutdowns of the Hornsea offshore wind farm, which is owned by the Danish wind farm company Orsted, and the Little Barford gas-fired power plant, owned by German utility giant RWE.
National Grid data showed both of the generators dropped from the grid at around the same time. The twin outages caused a sudden loss of frequency of the electricity grid, to below 49Hz, which would have caused certain parts of the network to disconnect automatically, causing the power cuts.
⚠️ #TLUpdates – Trains are currently at a stand between Farringdon & Bedford.
This is having a wider impact to services across the whole network. More information once we have it.
Full details, service updates, travel advice & ticket acceptance ℹ️👇https://t.co/iYMraBkjSy
— Thameslink (@TLRailUK) August 9, 2019