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Review into monster blackout

A review is under way after power was cut to about 110,000 homes and businesses across Adelaide and parts of South Australia, the result of a loss of electricity supplies from Victoria.

The 275,000-volt interconnector between the two states went down at 10.20pm yesterday which prompted safety systems to automatically kick in across the state.

Those systems instigated a series of rolling blackouts from Sellicks Beach, south of Adelaide, across the metropolitan area and north into the Barossa Valley.

The loss of the interconnector followed a planned outage at a Victorian power station earlier yesterday, but it was unclear if the two incidents were directly related.

SA Power Networks apologised to customers for the disruptions and said supplies had been restored to most customers by 1am today.

“SA Power Networks does not generate electricity, we are reliant on upstream supply,” the company said.

“The loss of capacity from Victoria resulted in automatic load shedding to avoid wider issues.”

There were no reports of incidents, including road crashes, related to the blackout which shut down traffic lights across Adelaide.

Some people with medical conditions were forced to rely on personal generators or other back-up supplies.

Hundreds took to Twitter and other social networks to comment, some seeing the funny side of being plunged into the dark by predicting a baby boom in nine months’ time.

SA Power Networks spokesman Paul Roberts said the loss of Victorian supplies cut about 160 megawatts of energy from SA’s available capacity.

He said the company would review the incident to determine how it could have been handled better.

“It certainly caught everyone by surprise last night,” he said.