COST OF POWER INTERRUPTION BASICS AND TUTORIALS

The costs of electric power outages to American electric customers are generally called “socio-economic” costs.

 Attempts have been made to quantify these costs but the estimates vary widely.

One source reports that the costs are $26 billion each year and that they have been increasing as the electric power industry is restructured.

A 2001 report1 from the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) states that power outages and problems with power quality cost the U.S. economy over $119 billion per year.

Numerous impacts of power outages have been identified. Included among these impacts are:

• Loss of life due to accidents (e.g., no street lights);

• Loss of life of ill and elderly (death rates go up);

• Loss of productivity by industry;

• Loss of sales by business;

• Loss of wages of labor;

• Damage to equipment in industry;

• Fires and explosions;

• Riots and thefts;

• Increased insurance rates.

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