Thu August 4, 2011
Who Gets Shut Off If We Have Rolling Blackouts?
Update: Austin Energy has released an updated version of this map. You can find it and an explanation here.
Earlier: Texas is currently in Energy Emergency Alert Level 2 as the electricity grid struggles to power air conditioning amid sweltering temperatures. Level 3 would require energy companies like Austin Energy to begin rolling blackouts like those we experienced if February.
After the energy crisis this winter, Austin Energy General Manager Larry Weis gave a presentation on the power emergency. The presentation included a map delineating areas of the city connected to so-called "load shed" circuits. These are the circuits that are the first to get turned off in the event of rolling blackouts.
If your home or business is connected to a "load shed" circuit. You are likely to experience an outage in the event of a rolling blackout.
If your home or business is connected to "under frequency" circuits, you will only experience blackouts in extreme power emergencies. These circuits were not turned off during the rolling blackouts earlier this month.
If your home or business is connected to "industrial, "critical care," or "downtown network" circuits, you will not be subject to rolling blackouts.
The map included in Weis's presentation didn't provide detail at the street level. But is was detailed enough for KUT to superimpose it over a Google map with major highways included.
Click the picture above to expand the image and get a better picture of where your neighborhood fits into Austin's grid.