MADRID – In several regions in Spain, the electricity was out for an extended period on Saturday afternoon. An incident involving a seaplane in France to fight a forest fire was the reason for this. The plane hit a power line.
According to media reports, there are forest fires between Narbonne and Carcassonne over an area of about five square kilometres. Hundreds of firefighters and several bus planes have been deployed to fight the fires.
Hundreds of thousands of citizens were without power between five and six o’clock on Saturday afternoon due to the break in the ‘very high voltage line’ of 40,000 volts that connects the grid between Spain and France. This has been confirmed by Red Electrica de España. It involved different parts of Catalonia, Madrid, Andalucia, Extremadura, Aragon, Basque Country, Navarra and Murcia. The power outage also affected several parts of Portugal. The incident was resolved before 6pm.
“At 4.35pm, a failure in the French electricity system coincided with a forest fire in the south of France. As a result, two circuits of the electrical connection between Spain and France were disconnected. This was followed by the disconnection of the electricity network in the Iberian Peninsula from the rest of Europe. This was stated in a statement from REE that same afternoon.
“A fire extinguisherplane incident has led to a problem in the French high-voltage grid, temporarily disconnecting the peninsula from the rest of Europe,” explained Red Eléctrica through its social networks.
640,000 Affected Affiliates
The Proteccion Civil of Catalonia published a message via its Twitter account @emergenciescat at 5.12pm with the warning: “General power failure according to Endesa. There are approximately 640,000 affected affiliates. There is no forecast of a recovery”. Endesa sources explain that the power outage affected more than a million people at times. Thousands of other Spaniards with contracts with companies other than Endesa were also affected by the power outage. More than 100,000 households in France were also affected. affected by the outage.
Connection to the system was restored in most affected areas after just under an hour. Hundreds of citizens responded to the power outage on social networks. As a result, #apagon (dropout) became a trending topic (the term with the most comments on the social network Twitter) in Spain.