When a powerful storm knocks out power supply across a city, all businesses and retail homes in the area are left scrambling. Without power supply, office computers, data centres, assembly lines, and many other offices and office devices are useless because they cannot work. Every single minute without power supply means a lot of money is lost in revenues. Power outages can be a dire scenario and it is the reason why government agencies, hospitals, and companies in Australia keep standby generating sets to power up their main operations in the event of power loss.
Generators can make the difference as to whether your business will function, or will halt its operations when power blackout occurs. However, buying and installing of a backup generator is just but the first step. Regular testing is required to ensure that it works properly. Unused generating sets which are parked like cars for a long period of time are highly likely to fail. Fuel storage mistakes can also cause various other serious problems.
It is a fact that acquisition of generators can be a huge cost upfront. Maintenance and running of generators is expected and they can be used in emergency situations or on remote job sites. You should regularly inspect the generators to ensure that they will work well when there is power outage. It can be more frustrating if there is a power outage when a generator is in place but it does not function thus rendering it useless for that particular moment. An example of this situation happened during the Hurricane Sandy in the United States, where three hospitals in New York, which were installed with backup generators, experienced the full effects of this hurricane because the generators failed at that time when they were direly needed.
Hundreds of patients in those hospitals had to be evacuated because there was no power supply to support the operation of ventilators and medical monitors. Again in the United States, a similar situation happened in hospitals in New Orleans during the 2005 Hurricane Katrina, which caused deaths of several patients. The two examples justify the reason why disaster preparedness is not simply about the installation of backup generating sets but also regularly testing them so as to ensure that they function well in an emergency situation.
According to a research that was conducted by Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), the rate of failure of backup generators in the United States is 15%. Human error, which results from inadequate testing or poor planning, plays a great role. To be prepared for disasters that may happen in the future, testing of backup generators quarterly or monthly should be done. The testing should not be just about seeing if they start well, but also Load Testing should be done.
Load Testing refers to using the generator to power up the facility equipments the way they should in the event of real power outage.
Because power outages can happen anytime, financial companies, sewage-treatment plants, jails, air traffic control towers, hospitals and such other should have power back up available in the event of power outages, and as part of their disaster preparedness program. For more interesting information, you can visit the following URL:
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