Entire island of Cyprus suffers blackout

April 4, 2012 — According to reports, nearly the entire island nation of Cyprus is in a blackout following a problem with a local power plant that caused a wider grid outage.

Supplies of power have been low in Cyprus since an accidental 2011 explosion that severely damaged the 700 MW Vassilikos power plant and drastically lowered capacity. The state-controlled Cyprus Electric Authority said the power supply had been restored April 4.

A unit of the 460 MW Dhekelia Power Station, located about 10 miles east of the port city of Larnaca, stopped functioning late April 3, which triggered a cascading power failure throughout the island's grid.

The island's transmission system operator reported that available generation dipped as low as 123 MW, with demand normally running as high as 576 MW during the day.

The island's total output capacity is about 824 MW, and utility officials were forced to bring online aging power stations to try to meet demand.

Reports are not clear yet as to what caused the Dhekelia Power Station to go offline. The power plant has eight units that run on heavy fuel oil.

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