Reasons for power outages
Manitoba Hydro crew melt ice off power lines.
The 4 most common reasons for power outages in our province, include:
Adverse weather, lightning, tree contacts
(35% of outages from 2012–2016)
- High winds can bring down trees and branches causing them to contact power lines.
- Lightning hitting power lines or other equipment.
- A storm resulting in heavy snow or ice on power lines can cause them to break.
- A pole fire or structure fire.
- Equipment failure, adverse environment
(34% of outages from 2012–2016)
- Downed power lines.
- A broken or fallen pole, or old or aging infrastructure.
- A failure with our equipment such as a faulted transformer, failed line fuse or a problem at one of our substations.
- Equipment failure due to technical problems within the equipment or abnormal environmental conditions (fire, flood, corrosion).
(16% of outages from 2012–2016)
- Raccoons, squirrels, or other animals can cause short circuits by contacting power lines or other equipment.
- Birds landing on power lines or transformers can trip fuses.
- Objects, such as shoes or kites, hanging from power lines.
- Vehicle accidents involving power lines, poles or other equipment.
- Equipment, such as a crane at a construction site, coming into contact with a power line.
- Excavation or digging by contractors or the public without proper line locations and clearances can cut underground wires.
- Unknown, other
(11% of outages from 2012–2016)
- No apparent cause or reason can be determined.