Y2K Was: Re: POWER: San Mateo/San Francisco power outage report

Nathan Stratton nathan at robotics.net
Wed Dec 9 15:46:01 UTC 1998

On Wed, 9 Dec 1998, Jon Zeeff wrote:

> > breakers on the substation.  It also caused a cascade effect, tripping
> > the Hunters Point and Potrero power plants.  
> > grid primary power sources.  Aside from the human error, the system worked
> > "as designed to protect the rest of the grid."
> I suggest that causing a cascade effect and increasing the area of an
> outage isn't a good way to design a system.

I would agree, that is why I am worried about year 2K power issues. I
think for the most part everything is ok with most of the larger
providers, but I have talked to several smaller energy providers who will
not be ready for y2k. The systems that may/will (depending on who you talk
to) fail are normally not that big of a deal to restart after they trip.
The problem is that this could cause a cascading failure that would take
down most of the national grid. When you have something like that happen
it is not that easy to bring everything back on-line. As far as I know we
have never had the entire national grid fail, we have had large
sections (say New York, 13 north western states, etc.) of the grid fail
because of cascading failures that were caused by very small problems. 

If you are a ISP, you better have your generators ready, I think you are
going to need to use them.

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Nathan Stratton				Telecom & ISP Consulting
www.robotics.net	 		nathan at robotics.net

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