New York's Flatiron District Without Power on Hot August Day

August 31, 2018

By Erik Linask - Group Editorial Director

With another hot summer day on the way, more than ConEdison utility customers in the Flatiron District in New York City were without power Thursday morning.  That included many businesses, some of which were forced to close for the day, with power likely out for most of the day.  ConEd expected to have power restored to all customers by 7:00pm. 

While the cause of the outage was under investigation, ConEd urged its customers in the area to reduce their electricity consumption to reduce the risk of further outages.  The utility cautioned that high-consumption appliances should be avoided unless required for health purposes.  That includes washers, dryers, and air conditioners.  On especially hot days, the energy draw from increases from the increased use of air conditioners, putting a strain on energy resources, which could be part of the reason for the outage.

Hot weather has always been a concern for utilities, which often warn customers to limit their uce of major appliances to evening hours during summer months to avoid outages.  Businesses are high users of electricity to begin with, and high heat increase their consumption as the try to keep conditions for employees and customers comfortable.  Food service also draws more form power grids to simply keep freezers and refrigerators at proper temperatures.  It can all lead to frequent outages, which are accompanied by power surges that can damage sensitive equipment that businesses rely on for their business operations.

While we’re nearing the end of the summer season, there are sure to be at least a few more high-heat days to come that will put a strain on power grids.  Businesses should take the opportunity to evaluate their power protection and UPS systems to make sure their expensive technology is protected from damaged spikes and surges during outage situations.  In addition to mitigating the risk of damage, UPS systems also provide enough backup power to systems to be properly shut down to protect against data loss or corruption.

Edited by Erik Linask