As the days have passed, and an answer to what really caused the massive power cut that virtually shut down Turkey early on Tuesday morning, March 31st 2015, is seemingly no nearer. The head of the country’s state-run power grid has resigned, taking responsibility for a host of management errors that are now said to be responsible for the black out. A further two officials have since been suspended and are currently under investigation.
The official line to date is that the problem arose due to two major plant maintenance shutdowns, carried out simultaneously. Other reports mention a problem originating with the main power distribution lines.
However, terrorism fears and conspiracy theories that immediately followed the event continue to make people jittery, and some remain unconvinced as to the true cause of the power failure. Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu said of the outrage at the time “Every possibility including a terrorist attack is being investigated”.
The chaos and confusion struck fear in the hearts of a nation when public transport across the country came to a virtual standstill. Traffic lights failed; travel networks were in a mess and commuters were unable to get to work. Gridlock and near panic took hold with some people stranded for hours in elevators; hospitals and lives were put at risk. An estimated 70 million people were affected by the failure – there was a public outcry…and answers were needed.
While the source of the power cut is still a little unclear, the recent revelation that an oil pipeline explosion in Turkey back in 2008 was triggered by computer hacking, and the more recent high-profile Sony Pictures Entertainment hacking drama, it’s understandable that rumours and speculation can quickly gain credence…start panic and mayhem.
No official figures attributable to the ten hour black out seem available to date. During those ten hours, emergency services were stretched to breaking point.
Ever more frequently, cyber attacks are targeting industrial control systems that run the production networks of critical infrastructure, stealing data and causing damage
With electricity demand in Turkey ever rising due to its fairly healthy economic growth rate and a rapidly growing population, lessons must be learned from this event, and measures identified and implemented in order to avoid the confusion and lack of preparedness in such eventualities.
Label Bar would like to credit all those who worked through incredibly difficult circumstances to get the lights & power switched back on, ending a power cut which cost the Turkish economy almost $800 million.
For those working in the power sector, Label Bar manufacture a number of Electrical symbol labels to help ensure your safety.