KYIV – Ukraine’s grid operator told consumers to brace for more blackouts in Kyiv and other regions on Monday as it seeks to reduce the strain on energy infrastructure damaged by Russian missile and drone attacks.
Rolling blackouts are becoming increasingly routine in the capital of 3 million after a wave of Russian attacks on power facilities that have damaged 40% of energy infrastructure since Oct. 10.
Several of those attacks have struck during the Monday rush hour, but there was no immediate indication of new strikes on Monday morning, although President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said late on Sunday that Russia might be preparing new attacks.
“The country’s power grid still cannot resume full operation after the Russian terrorist attacks. In some regions, we have to introduce blackouts to avoid overloading the high-voltage infrastructure,” the Ukrenergo grid operator said.
Scheduled shutdowns from 06.00 a.m. local time to the end of the day will affect Kyiv and the regions of Chernihiv, Cherkasy, Zhytomyr, Sumy, Kharkiv, and Poltava, it said in a statement.
Zelenskiy said in his nightly video address to the nation that more than 4.5 million consumers were without power.
Kyiv mayor Vitaly Klitschko has told the city’s residents to consider everything, including a worst-case scenario where the capital loses power and water completely.
Reporting by Tom Balmforth; editing by Timothy Heritage