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Keep your plant running during a blackout

25 January 2023

THE ENERGY crisis comes not only with massively inflated prices per KWH for the end user, but also the news that blackouts (loss of grid/network supply) could become a reality in 2023.

It has been cited that if adverse weather, the global issues like the Russia/Ukraine war and other factors cause the ‘perfect storm’, UK power generation could be concentrated in particular areas, (ie cities/London), potentially resulting in certain regions suffering from blackouts to compensate.

If this is just the UK energy providers playing safe and advising before the event we will have to wait and see, but this statement has been enough for end users to reconsider what they would do and how they would continue to operate in such an event. We have only seen blackouts previously in adverse and rare weather events, but the threat of an actual lack of energy to power the country is something we have not seen in our generation.

For most end users, a requirement for temporary diesel generated power would never have been considered, or indeed required. Most buildings/factories are not set up for accepting anything other than grid mains and because of this any blackouts could cause major disruption and downtime/power loss. From refrigeration to care homes, this can have devastating effect.

So, what are the Key Requirements to prepare for Blackouts?

  • A contingency plan
  • An emergency contract to cover for such events
  • How much power (KVA) is required to continue operating?
  • How will the site switch from mains to generator supply (normally via a ATS (automatic transfer switch) which should be permanent fixture)
  • How quick is power back on required?
  • Recommendations for ATS and quick connect generator option.

How Quantum Conrols can help

We offer a comprehensive site survey to underwrite the contingency plan for such possible blackouts, this includes for the following:

  • Determines the power (KVA) required
  • How the temporary power would be deployed and how quick for getting back online
  • Any logistic issues, space, access etc
  • *Connection to the site distribution system and safe operation for grid/temporary power via and ATS system
  • A standard operating procedure so the end user has a fixedand pre-determined plan in place.

To find out more about Generator Hire click here

Extra tips

When grid mains supply goes off, there is no notice to when this comes back online from the DNO. Grid/generator mains cannot both be connected at the same time without causing possible major failures, not to mention safety issues. Based on this, a safe and quick connect option (for temp generator power) should be put in place prior, rather than to react to a blackout event.

  • Be proactive, not reactive. A reactive re connection to power can be prolonged, unknown, and unsafe without preplanning
  • Have the generator power connection and ATS in place now, if all you require is the generator, the downtime is reduced considerably
  • Have a contingency plan, your building / factory etc may be in the dark, your route for power re connection does not need to be
  • The QC survey will underwrite your risk and give best advice, let the experts advise your contingency plan
  • Don’t delay, if blackouts are being mentioned now by the DNO, such an event should be expected and prepared for