The University Teaching Hospital was forced to use candles to light some general wards due to the power blackout that left Lusaka and other parts of the country in the dark.UTH Assistant Public Relations Officer Natalie Mashikolo confirmed in an interview that UTH had no power from 19.39 hours to 23.00 hours.
She stated that the medical personnel had to use oxygen cylinders for the patients who needed oxygen and UTH had to use candles to light some general wards as they do not have generators.
She said, however, the hospital’s sensitive areas such as the Neonatal ICU that utilizes incubators for the premature babies and the operating theatres were not affected by the power failure because the hospital has backup generators. She said the institution managed to run relatively smoothly despite the power failure.
Meanwhile, the Kenneth Kaunda International Airport in Lusaka, the country’s major port of entry was also plunged into darkness after the power blackout. The Airport was using standby generators that supplied electricity to other facilities such as the control block, runway, taxiways and navigation aids during the power blackout. Passengers aboard a plane that landed in the midst of the blackout were made to wait inside the plane for a long time while airport staff conducted things manually.
Yesterday, a nationwide power outage hit Zambia for close to four hours, following a national blackout after power went out across the country with the exception of Southern and Western Provinces, that continued receiving power from Victoria Falls Power Station. The power outage is said to have been caused by a system failure at the Kafue Gorge Power Station, following a fault at Luano Power Station that resulted in a protective mechanism that switched off generation machines at Kafue Gorge and others.