What is a power outage? 

Power outages can refer to any short-term or long-term disruptions to electricity supply in a specific location. These outages may affect a single property or business or may extend to the entire city. There are a few main types of power outages which can impact a premise, and these include: 

  1. Brownout – This term refers to a voltage drop which causes the lights to dim. Brownouts can also cause electrical equipment to malfunction or operate at a below-standard rate. 
  2. Blackout – Blackouts include the complete loss of power in an area. These outages can last for as short as a few minutes or can extend for prolonged periods. 
  3. Permanent fault – In the event of a failure on the power line, there is often a significant loss of power and electrical supply to the properties typically serviced by that particular line. These outages last until the line is repaired or replaced. 

What causes a power outage? 

Some power outages are planned to allow for proper maintenance and upgrades of the system. However, many outages are unpredictable, and the result of unavoidable consequences. Some of the potential causes of a power outage may include: 

  • Weather: Weather is the most common cause of a power outage. Electrical disruptions are often triggered by storms, cold weather, floods and bushfires. The unexpected nature of these natural disasters means such power outages can last for long periods. 
  • Animals: Some local wildlife can cause the outages and damage electrical equipment if they come into contact with the system 
  • Vehicles: Car accidents that involve power poles or lines can cause disruptions in the surrounding area 
  • Equipment Failure: Generator Ill-serviced or old equipment can malfunction and cause issues within the electrical supply system. 
  • Spikes: Rapid increases in the electrical supply voltage often trigger power outages. These are typically the result of lightning strikes or short circuits. 

What are the effects of a power outage on a business? 

The nature of modern-day business means that many companies are heavily dependent on having a continuous and uninterrupted supply of electricity for their daily operation. Without an adequate power supply, companies are unable to use items such as computers, manufacturing equipment and lights. This lack of access can have a significant impact on the bottom line of the business and hinder productivity. The potential consequence of these power outages include: 

Lost customers and revenue 

Many businesses are unable to continue at normal capacity without power. Some companies are also prevented from operating at all during these circumstances. These forced closures may incur a loss in customers and potential revenue and may tarnish the public’s perception of your legitimacy. A damaged reputation can have long-lasting and disastrous effects on business productivity and requires significant marketing efforts to regain consumer trust. 

Unturned Inventory 

Unexpected downtime during an outage may decrease the speed of offloading inventory. If customers are unable to make purchases during the electrical disruption, your unturned inventory will increase, potentially leading to product wastage. 

Decreased Employee Productivity 

Power outages can significantly shift the workload of any employees. Some workers may be unable to complete their usual tasks while the critical equipment is down. Other staff members, particularly IT employees, may need to work overtime to compensate for the issue and resolve the problems. The impact of lost employee productivity on your business’ bottom line depends on the duration of the power outage. 

Stored Computer Data Lost 

Power outages are one of the leading causes of data loss. Computers and operating systems need to be shut down correctly, and unexpected outages can lead to incorrect shutdowns and malfunctions. This abrupt disruption can impact any current working files, as well as those saved on a hard drive. 

Damaged Equipment 

A power outage can cause long-term damage to business equipment. While these issues may not present immediately, the sudden electrical disruption can trigger malfunctions within the system or significantly hinder the unit’s expected lifespan. The cost for generator repair or replace the equipment sooner than expected is another unanticipated expense that can hamper business profitability and cash flow. 

How can your business survive a power outage? 

The effects of a power outage range from short-term and manageable, to ongoing and expensive for industrial and commercial entities. The easiest and most effective way to survive these circumstances is to install a backup generator on your property. Paired with an automatic transfer switch, this system will sense a power outage and immediately re-route the supply of power from the mains circuit to your backup generator. This autonomous and instantaneous transition will reduce the time spent without power and allow for the continued function of your business. 

Reactive Generators

Reactive Generators provides a comprehensive and specialised range of services for commercial and industrial generators. Operating across Queensland, our skilled technicians work across Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast and Ipswich. We pride ourselves on maintaining a commitment to excellence in every aspect of our work, which is why your needs are always our number one priority. Get in touch with our friendly team to experience the Reactive Generators difference.