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Heavy rains cause massive power blackout in parts of Nairobi

Power blackout has been experienced in several parts of Nairobi County following the heavy rains that pounded the region on Wednesday.

Kenya Power responded to massive enquiries on its social media handles assuring customers that the issue was being addressed and they were working to normalize operations as fast as they could.

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The areas affected include;

Muthaiga Ex-Limuru (Limuru Tea Company, Muhuri Muchiri, Githiga and Kamahindu)

UNEP Ex-kitisuru (Thigiri Ridge road, Nyari East, Red hill and Kathini East)

Pangani (Ex-Parklands affecting Pangani, Traffic HQ, Forest Lane, Muthaiga Road and Mathare Valley)

Kigwa Ex Ridgeways (Ridgeways, Kigwa lane and adjacent areas)

Buruburu Ex Kimathi (Buruburu, Ofafa, Maringo, Jericho, Makadara and Mbotela)

Kenyatta University Ex Ruiru (Kenyatta University, Clay City, Ruiru, Gatongora, Kihunguro and parts of Juja)

Umoja Ex komarock (Komarock, Parts of Kayole and Parts of Umoja)

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Kilimani Ex Ngong Road (Argwings Kodhek, George Padmore, Yaya Centre, Chaka Road, Chinese Centre and Hurlingham)

Njiru Ex Ruai (Njiru, Mihango and Chokaa)

Ngecha Ex Kitisuru (Kibichiko, Lower Kabete, Mwimuto, Kingeero, Kibiku, Kihara, Wangige, Gachie, Karura, Kanyungu)

Wellbeck Ex Parklands (Masari Road, General Mathenge drive,Thigiri Ridge and Parklands)

Most power outages are caused by severe weather conditions such as high winds, lightning, heavy rains or flooding. During a storm power poles are vulnerable to lightning strikes while strong winds can snap off tree branches and down power lines.

The heavy rainfall and flooding in parts of Nairobi also caused a major traffic snarl up affecting roads such as Mombasa Road, Ngong Road and Thika Road.

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Flooding in Nairobi

Some Kenyans however took to social media and made light of the situation.

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This is however not the first time Kenyans have had to endure a major blackout. Some of the most memorable instances of power outage affect many areas at a time include:

June 2016

In June 2016, some ‘monkey business’ saw the entire country suffer a major power outage lasting about 15 minutes after a rogue primate got into the Gitaru Hydroelectric Power Station and triggered a blackout. Within three hours, power had been restored in most parts of the country.

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Photo Courtesy

“The monkey tripped a transformer. This triggered a cascading effect on the other generators which ended up disrupting power generation and distribution in the whole country,” Kenya Power spokesman Eric Kathenya said.

August 2016

In August 2016, Kenyans woke up to a countrywide electricity blackout following a fault in Kenya Power’s main supply line.

“We experienced a technical hitch that led to tripping of our main supply line -Olkaria Nairobi 220KV line- consequently leading to a power outage in most parts of the country,” said Kenya Power in a statement.

Kenyans expressed their disappointment and inconveniences caused by the early morning outage, with some pointing at incompetencies by the power supplier.

January 2017

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In January 2017, Kenya Power experienced a technical fault at one of its substations which caused an electricity outage that was affecting Nairobi, Mount Kenya and Coast regions.

“A technical fault occurred at a Kenya Power substation in Ndenderu (Nairobi North Substation) cutting off supplies from Olkaria geothermal fields to the City and causing a power outage …” the power supplier said in a statement.
 

Businesses affected

Industrial consumers in Nairobi and its environs generate about 60 percent of Kenya Power’s revenues.

Many firms in Kenya run stand-by generators to address frequent power interruptions, adding to their costs. Businesses say unreliable power supplies are a major obstacle to investment.

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