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FACTBOX: New blackouts across Ukraine, all nuclear power stations disconnected from system

Due to a sudden drop in energy consumption, the country’s three nuclear power plants were switched to emergency mode

MOSCOW, November 23. /TASS/. Problems with the electric power supply began on Wednesday across all of Ukraine following a series of explosions in the majority of Ukrainian regions as water and heat were turned off in some cities to boot. Due to a sudden drop in energy consumption, the country’s three nuclear power plants were switched to emergency mode.

The situation with the Ukrainian electric grid also triggered blackouts in neighboring Moldova and the authorities of the self-proclaimed republic of Transnistria reported power outages as well. TASS put together what is known about the situation at this time.

Explosions and consequences

- On Wednesday afternoon, an air raid alert was announced across the entire Ukraine beginning with its eastern regions.

- Explosions were reported in the Vinnitsa, Dnepropetrovsk, Lvov, Odessa, Kharkov, Khmelnitsky regions, the Ukrainian-controlled city of Zaporozhye as well as in Kiev. The Nikolayev and Poltava regions reported two series of explosions.

- The authorities of Kiev, Vinnitsa, the Kirovograd and Lvov regions reported damage to critical infrastructure facilities.

- Power outages began in Kiev and the water supply was shut off. Odessa and Kharkov are completely without power and water, Lvov also has no heat. The city of Dnepr reported a shutdown of its water supply.

- The Kiev subway is working intermittently while in Kharkov the underground has stopped service. All public transportation has been suspended in Lvov.

- Due to glitches in the power supply, the operation of the Ukrainian segment of the Druzhba oil pipeline has been temporarily suspended, official spokesman of the Russian pipeline operator Transneft Igor Demin told TASS.

- Ukrenergo reports that nationwide blackouts will continue over the next 24 hours.

Shutdown of nuclear power plants

- Due to a sharp drop in energy consumption, all three nuclear power plants located in Ukraine were taken out of their regular operating regime.

- All three power units of the South Ukrainian nuclear power plant were shut down in emergency mode, the operation of the Rovno nuclear power plant was suspended while the Khmelnitsky nuclear power plant was completely disconnected from the country's energy system.

Outages in Moldova

- Power outages began across all of Moldova as a consequence of the situation in neighboring Ukraine, which the republic is linked to via the Moldavskaya hydroelectric power plant. The energy supply in Chisinau and other Moldovan cities resumed after more than an hour.

- The self-proclaimed republic of Transnistria is completely without power. Currently, electric power supplies are gradually recovering there.

Previous outages

- The last major shutdown of the Ukrainian energy system occurred about a week ago, on November 15. The next day, the Russian Defense Ministry announced that on that day Russian troops delivered a massive strike on "Ukraine’s military command system and related electric power facilities."

- On November 18, Ukrainian Prime Minister Denis Shmygal said that almost half of the country’s energy system was rendered inoperative.

- As of now, the Russian military agency has not yet commented on the recent power outages in Ukraine.

Air raid alert

The air raid alert announced on Wednesday afternoon was lifted in all Ukrainian regions except for the Chernigov region, according to the official air raid alert service.

The first reports of air raid alerts in the country’s eastern regions began to come in around 12:26 pm (13:26 Moscow time). After about thirty minutes the alerts sounded across the entire country. All regions, including the Ukrainian capital, remained in the "red zone" for about two hours after which at 3:08 pm (16:08 Moscow time) signals canceling the alerts began to sound. Then the alerts were gradually lifted in western and central regions.