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Massive blackouts leave 55 million people without electricity in S America

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South American countries like Argentina, Paraguay, and Uruguay were left in a complete blackout on Sunday due to a "massive failure" in an electrical interconnection system, according to Edesur which is a Buenos Aires-based electricity distributor.

Quoting Edesur, CNN reported that parts of Chile and Brazil were also hit by the massive electricity outage.

While power has been partially restored in Uruguay, the company in its latest update removed the Latin American nation, along with Paraguay, from its latest list of affected countries. It is unclear as to how many residents have had their electricity restored in the two countries.

The "collapse" in its system occurred at around 7 am on Sunday morning, Edesur said in a statement.

In a tweet, the company confirmed that electricity has been restored to 7,00,000 customers in Buenos Aires' Caballito. "Standardization work is ongoing and could take all of Sunday," the company added.

"We prioritise the attention of electro-dependent users, but due to the seriousness of the failure in the Argentine electrical network we recommend attending a hospital if necessary," the company also tweeted, adding that the restoration of power to hospitals and health centres is being prioritised.

Citizens have claimed that it is nothing like anything they've ever seen before.

"The funny part is that we don't have electricity, but we have internet in our phones," Lucas Rodriguez from the Argentine capital told CNN.

Uruguay's National Administration of Power Plants and Electrical Transmissions has claimed that electricity has been restored to parts of western Uruguay, which border Argentina along with some southern regions like Montevideo.

The cause of the failure is being investigated. Edesur has launched an "emergency operational plan" to combat the situation.

Argentina, Uruguay, and Paraguay are home to around 55 million people, who are currently facing the blackout.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sun, June 16 2019. 23:05 IST
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