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Brazil still recovering from major outage, suffers blackout in Olympic city Rio

Saturday, November 28th 2009 - 05:15 UTC
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Power outages threaten Brazil’s reputation Power outages threaten Brazil’s reputation

Brazil has endured another major blackout and officials remain unclear what is causing the problem. Higher-scale Rio de Janeiro beach neighbourhood earlier in the week suffered an outage forcing employees to be sent home as restaurants and other businesses disposed of spoiled food.

It was a sweltering 39 degrees Celsius when the blackout hit, forcing residents and tourists to endure the summer heat while out on the beaches.

Brazilian energy regulators plan on opening an official investigation sometime next week, as the country aims to prevent additional blackouts from taking place in the future.

Before the most recent major power outage, government officials denied a cyber attack was responsible for several incidents in 2005 and 2007.

Around two weeks ago, a major blackout hit the country, with 70 million Brazilians and several million neighbouring Paraguayans left without electricity. The blackout on November 10 reportedly occurred due to a power station short circuit, leading to the largest hydroelectric dam, Itaipú, temporarily cutting off service.

But no official investigation has been made public yet, as has been promised by President Lula da Silva’s administration.

Rio de Janeiro was recently given the rights to host the 2016 Summer Olympic Games though some onlookers are concerned the country may not have the necessary infrastructure to support such a large influx of international visitors.

Officials are working with the city and country to develop some type of fail-safe plan, including a power island able to serve as a reliable power source during the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics.

Categories: Energy & Oil, Politics, Brazil.

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