Total blackout unlikely in Ukraine, DTEK says

18 November 2022, 10:33 PM
Kyiv without electricity, October 24 (Photo:REUTERS/Gleb Garanich)

Kyiv without electricity, October 24 (Photo:REUTERS/Gleb Garanich)

Despite relentless Russian missile strikes at Ukraine’s energy infrastructure, a total blackout across the country remains highly unlikely, head of Ukraine’s largest energy company DTEK, Dmytro Sakharuk, told Ukrainian broadcaster Suspilne on Nov. 18.

“A blackout is something the Russians are attempting (to induce) for more than a month now – ever since they started attacking our infrastructure in early October; but they will never achieve that,” said Sakharuk.

“Every day, out air defenses grow stronger. Thanks to the work of our technicians, who constantly repair power lines, substations, and power plants, we still have power. The situation is extremely difficult, but it remains under control.”

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He added that widespread power cuts are necessary to keep the power grid from overloading and allow for repairs to be made.

“Power outages are not the worst thing that could happen,” Sakharuk said.

“It’s key that we retain the ability to bring the network back online. Often the automated systems shut it down to prevent the system from burning out, which would have left us with no means to control it.”

Although Kyiv could theoretically lose power completely for up to 6 hours in a blackout, the likelihood of this happening remains low, according to Sakharuk.

“If we continue to make frequent and quick repairs after every attack, to make sure we have necessary equipment, the likelihood of this scenario (of a total blackout) will remain low,” he concluded.

“Meaning, that’s an acceptable price to pay to keep living and keep fighting for our victory.”

On Nov. 18, Ukrainian PM Denys Shmyhal said that Russian air strikes have disrupted almost half of Ukraine’s energy infrastructure.

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