Brazil's electricity regulator Aneel said a fire in Brazil's Piaui state downed several transmission lines, disconnecting northeastern Brazil from the power grid and cutting tens of millions of people off from electric power.
States affected by the power outage include Bahia, Piaui, Pernambuco, Maranhao, Ceara, Rio Grande do Norte, Paraiba, Alagoas and Sergipe. Media reports pointed out that four of the affected cities are scheduled to host the 2014 World Cup.
Power is being restored to the populous major cities, but outlying towns and villages will take longer to restore power to, according to authorities. The cause of the fire, or how extensively it damaged energy infrastructure, is unknown at this time.
Widespread power outages spread across eight Brazilian states, according to Brazil's Electric Energy System Operator, which oversees transmission and distribution as well as power generation.
Brazil has an installed capacity of about 121 GW.
This article was originally published on Electric Light & Power/POWERGRID International. It was republished with permission.