Left Menu
Development News Edition

UPDATE 3-Millions lose power as Indonesia capital, parts of Java hit by blackout

Reuters | Jakarta | Updated: 04-08-2019 17:32 IST | Created: 04-08-2019 17:15 IST
UPDATE 3-Millions lose power as Indonesia capital, parts of Java hit by blackout
Image Credit: Pixabay

Indonesia's state power company PLN estimated on Sunday it would take several hours to restore power to Jakarta after a major blackout, blaming technical issues for cutting power to tens of millions of people in the capital and surrounding provinces.

The power outage spread across areas that are home to more than 100 million people and appeared to have affected most areas of the capital, prompting the use of generators in some offices, malls and apartments. "Hopefully for the Jakarta system, if everything goes to plan and the generating system is reliable, smooth supply should return in approximately three hours," Sripeni Intan Cahyani, acting chief executive of PT Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN), told a news conference.

Cahyani said electricity customers in the provinces of West Java and Banten should get power back within four to five hours. She blamed faulty transmission circuits at the Ungaran power plant in Central Java for causing voltage drops that hit power networks in Jakarta as well as West Java and Banten provinces.

"We will investigate to find the root causes and analyse them in detail. We will appoint an independent party to investigate," said Cahyani, who only took up her post on Friday. Another PLN official said two out of three circuits had gone down triggering "cascading voltage" that caused outages as the west system collapsed.

Earlier on Sunday, the mass rapid transit (MRT) system in Jakarta had to evacuate passengers from trains after the power outage that began just before noon local time (0500 GMT). The city of Jakarta is the centre for government and business in Indonesia and is home to more than 10 million people, with around three times that many people living in the surrounding towns. The capital does suffer periodic blackouts, but usually short-lived and confined to certain areas.

AIRPORT, HOSPITALS OPERATING NORMALLY Operations at Jakarta's international airport remained normal using back-up generators, its operator said via Twitter.

Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan also said via Twitter that public hospitals were operating as usual, relying on generators. But at train stations, hundreds of passengers were left stranded after commuter lines stopped working.

"The train stopped all of sudden, we had to wait for a long time," said Ella Wasila, a passenger near Sudirman station in downtown Jakarta. "There were so many babies in the coach, they were crying, and people were shouting 'open the door'." The power outage also disrupted some cellular phone networks and provider Telkomsel said it was compiling an inventory of the number of devices affected by the power cut.

The blackout also caused traffic lights to go out in some areas of the capital, creating traffic jams. Wiwik Widayanti, chief executive of the Jakarta regional train service, said more than 800,000 people used the network per day at a weekend, so buses would be used to transport stranded passengers.

Indonesian Consumers Foundation (YLKI) said the blackout could discourage investment in Southeast Asia's biggest economy and urged the government to increase PLN's capacity. "Power outages, especially in the Greater Jakarta area, are not only detrimental for residential consumers but also to the business sector," Tulus Abadi, an executive at the foundation, said in a statement. Ordinary Indonesians also took to Twitter to express their frustration.

A Twitter user with the handle @henrydjunaedi said in a post: "I'm a cashless guy, this is a nightmare ... So far I can only find one working ATM in a 10 km radius. Restaurants and markets are closing or not accepting card payments."



South Africa's COVID-19 response: Surprising outcomes or just poor data management?

South Africa has been committed to improving its health information system and shows that a robust digital has considerable scope to improve healthcare for the entire population. But the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted that significant ga...

Post-COVID-19 Nigeria needs a robust Health Management Information System to handle high disease burden

Nigeria is among a few countries that conceptualised a health management information system HMIS in the early 90s but implementation has been a challenge till date. Besides COVID-19, the country has a huge burden of communicable and non-com...

Morocco COVID-19 response: A fragile health system and the deteriorating situation

Learning from its European neighbors, Morocco imposed drastic measures from the initial stages of the COVID-19 outbreak to try to contain its spread. The strategy worked for a few months but the cases have surged after mid-June. In this sit...

COVID-19: Argentina’s health system inefficiencies exaggerate flaws of health information system

You can recover from a drop in the GDP, but you cant recover from death, was the straightforward mindset of Argentinas President Alberto Fernndez and defined the countrys response to COVID-19. The South American nation imposed a strict...


Latest News

INSIGHT-Puzzled scientists seek reasons behind Africa's low fatality rates from pandemic

Africas overburdened public health systems, dearth of testing facilities and overcrowded slums had experts predicting a disaster when COVID-19 hit the continent in February. The new coronavirus was already wreaking havoc in wealthy Asian an...

GLOBAL MARKETS-Asian markets push higher after U.S. bounce

Asian markets largely opened higher on Tuesday, building on newfound momentum after bargain hunters helped a recovery in U.S. markets in the wake of last weeks selloff.Hong Kongs Hang Seng index was up 0.2 while Chinese shares opened higher...

Heart Foundation announces $4.2 million funding for research training

The Heart Foundation today announced 4.2 million dollars of funding for heart research and specialist training for New Zealand cardiologists, bringing the total awarded by the charity since its formation in 1968, to more than 78 million dol...

EXPLAINER-Why the coronavirus death rate still eludes scientists

Global deaths from COVID-19 have reached 1 million, but experts are still struggling to figure out a crucial metric in the pandemic the fatality rate - the percentage of people infected with the pathogen who die.Here is a look at issues sur...

Give Feedback