CUC power outage major

A major Caribbean Utilities Company power failure turned out the lights on nearly 60 per cent of its customers on Grand Cayman Wednesday afternoon.

The outage, which occurred at 1.10pm, was caused by a failure of station auxiliary power to CUC’s largest engine room and resulted in the loss of four large generating units with 48 megawatts of demand capacity. The power was out only 10 minutes or so for some customers and as long as one and a half hours for others.

The central George Town business district was without power for about 20 minutes.

Coincidentally, CUC was conducting its annual hurricane drill all day Wednesday, but the outage had nothing to do with that, company spokesperson Caren Thompson said.

‘As a matter of fact, it may have facilitated a speedier response as most of our employees were on site participating in the hurricane drill,’ she said.

When the four generators went down, CUC’s switching equipment automatically shed some of its load to prevent an island-wide blackout, the company said in a press release afterwards.

CUC’s engineers were performing a thorough investigation to determine the cause of the outage and to identify actions that could be taken to prevent similar outages from occurring.

The engineers will also determine if any of the four generators were damaged in any way by the outage.