Blackout hits dozens of blocks in Tampines

Blackout hits dozens of blocks in Tampines
IN THE DARK: A view of one of the blocks in Tampines which was hit by the blackout yesterday. The incident happened at around 6.20am, affecting blocks in Tampines Avenue 4, according to Singapore Power.

SINGAPORE - A blackout in Tampines yesterday plunged at least 44 housing blocks into darkness for more than an hour.

The incident happened around 6.20am, affecting blocks in Tampines Avenue 4, according to Singapore Power.

But Chinese newspaper Lianhe Wanbao said that even more blocks were affected, including some in Tampines Central 1, Street 82 and Street 11.

The newspaper's estimate was about 50 blocks in total, as well as one school.

Pictures sent in by Wanbao readers showed blocks shrouded in darkness. In addition, the blocks' lifts and some traffic lights were knocked out.

At Qiaonan Primary School in Tampines Street 11 which had also lost power, pupils were seen assembling in the darkened canteen.

Residents complained about having to use the stairs, taking cold showers, and fumbling around their homes in darkness as they got ready to go to work or school.

A 70-year-old resident told Lianhe Wanbao that she had got up early to prepare breakfast for her family.

"At around 6.30am, the television set suddenly lost power, and I couldn't use the kettle. I thought our flat's circuits had tripped, but when I opened the door I saw it was completely dark in the surrounding areas," she said.

The incident may be one of the largest blackouts to have hit a Housing Board estate.

The last reported incident of a mass blackout was in August 2012, when at least 10 blocks in Serangoon North had their power cut.

A Singapore Power spokesman told MyPaper that its officers were immediately deployed on site to restore supply "as soon as possible".

Power was progressively restored from 6.55am and fully restored by 7.45am. Singapore Power is looking into the cause of the incident.

"We apologise to all affected residents for the inconvenience caused," said the spokesman.

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