Auckland data centres pull through grid emergency

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Auckland data centres pull through grid emergency

IT operators survive blackout.

Data centre operators in the North Island of New Zealand have weathered an extensive power outage that saw electricity supply interrupted to a large swathe of the upper North Island in New Zealand on Monday.

The island's largest data centre operators, contacted by iTNews, have all reported that their facilities weathered the outage that hit the country's most populous region around 3pm on Monday afternoon.
Spokesman Duncan Blair from state-owned ISP Orcon - which runs a data centre on Auckland's North Shore - said its facility was "rock solid" and saw no interruption in service.

The Monday afternoon power outage was caused by a fire below distribution company Transpower's lines, near Tamihere, southeast of Hamilton. This caused widespread power cuts in the Waikato region, Auckland and the upper North Island up to Whangarei, with Transpower declaring a grid emergency.

Electricity retailer Vector was directed by Transpower to introduce load management on the power grid, to reduce pressure on the network. This caused power cuts to many thousands of homes in the Auckland region and further north.

Commuter chaos ensued as trains and traffic signals were knocked out in Auckland. The mayor of Auckland, John Banks, called the situation "ridiculous" and lambasted the government for "callous disregard" and Transpower for "reckless management".

Banks said Transpower executives on huge salaries would be held to account for the power cuts.

Power was restored to the region around 8.30pm after police escorted Transpower staff to the farm on which the fire took place, after the owner of the property refused entry to for repair workers.

Over 800MW of power was lost from Auckland during the outage, according to Transpower.

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