Blackout in Crimea after incident at Russian power station

Blackout in Crimea after incident at Russian power station

MOSCOW: Crimea was completely without electricity on Wednesday (Jun 13) following an incident at a power station in Russia, authorities in the peninsula Moscow annexed from Ukraine in 2014 said.

"The whole of Crimea is without electricity. The power supply will be restored within three hours. Please remain calm," Crimea's pro-Kremlin leader Sergei Aksyonov wrote on Facebook.

He added the blackout was the result of an incident at a power station in Russia's southern Krasnodar region.

"Due to strong voltage surges, the emergency system switched on and disconnected the line," Aksyonov said.

The Russian energy ministry on Wednesday issued a statement saying power in Crimea will be reestablished "shortly".

AFP journalists in Simferopol, the capital of Crimea, and in the port city of Sevastopol said there was no electricity in the two cities.

Crimea was almost wholly dependent on electricity from Ukraine at the time of its annexation by Russia in March 2014, that saw a military operation followed by a referendum not recognised by Kiev and the West.

Ukraine stopped supplying energy to Crimea in late 2015, leaving the region reliant on an underwater cable running from Russia and inhabitants facing frequent problems.

In July 2017, abnormally high temperatures in Russia's Krasnodar region led to electricity cuts that brought Crimea to a standstill, with traffic lights not working and trolleybuses stuck.

Source: AFP/na