Large-scale power outages hits London and SE England

Trains ground to a halt and traffic lights were knocked out after a suspected failure of the National Grid left a large area of London and the South East without power.

Now imagine the transport chaos! The power cuts happened just at rush hour.

London in the dark and traffic chaos as large-scale power outages hit London and South East UK on August 9, 2019. Picture: Reuters / Toby Melville

UK Power Networks, which controls the power lines for London and the South East, confirmed the outage shortly after 5pm on Friday, stating that the cut was likely caused by a “failure” of the National Grid’s network.

Similar outages were also reported in the Midlands, South West, and Wales, where power lines are run by Western Power Distribution.

Transport For London (TFL) confirmed that service on the London Underground’s Victoria Line is suspended, and trains in and out of the capital have been hit with delays and cancelations. Striking during rush hour, the blackout left commuters stranded in the city.

Video footage shared on social media showed a throng of passengers walking through a darkened Clapham Junction station, while staff at Vauxhall Station turned commuters away and onto the street.

Police officers could be seen boarding a stationary train in another clip, after Thameslink reported its trains were “at a stand.”

Traffic lights have also been affected, and TFL urged motorists to exercise caution on the roads.

Commuters and Londoners have been sharing stories of getting stuck in the train – or, for the luckier few, getting a free round of drinks in a blacked-out pub.

The power outage comes alongside miserable weather in London. Forecasters at the Met Office have issued a yellow weather warning, predicting strong winds and heavy rain overnight.

Yesterday, an earthquake shook Cornwall, with some describing the seismic event as like a “sonic boom” or a “loud bang from beneath”. Could it be related to the today’s major outage?

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