Major power outage in Muscat and some other governorates threw life out of gear for few hours on Monday, as traffic signals stopped functioning, work in offices, schools, banks and stock exchange came to an abrupt halt.
The outage affected the governorates of Muscat, parts of North and South Al Batinah, North and South Al Sharqiyah, and Al Dakhiliyah. The power supply was restored within three to four hours in a phased manner in affected areas.
Essential services, including hospitals, ran on power generators, while many found solace in their vehicles by putting car ACs on. The power supply got disrupted at around 1.45 pm on Monday.
The Authority for Public Services Regulation (APSR) issued statements explaining the situation in which it stated the Electricity Main Interconnected System (EMIS) faced partial blackout.
A source from the Public Authority for Electricity and Water (PAEW) said the snag was due to a power failure in the main grid owing to excessive consumption of power.
Vehicular movement in major cities came to a halt, while minor accidents were reported due to chaos at traffic signals, which stopped working.
Many commercial complexes and offices had to shut down for a few hours till the electricity was restored.
The Emergency Cases Management Centre at the Ministry of Health said that health institutions in the governorates affected by the power outage are not affected, and are operating at their normal efficiency with the help of backup generators.
Sources at the APSR further said that power supply has been partially restored in areas including Muscat, parts of Al Mawaleh, Ghala, Al Misfat, Ghala Heights, Madinat Al Sultan Qaboos.
In the Governorate of Al Dakhiliyah, power was restored fully in Nizwa, Adam, Izki, parts of Bahla.
In South Al Batinah, electricity in Nakhl and Barka has been restored fully, while efforts are on to restore power supply in parts of Al Rustaq.
In North Al Sharqiyah, power restoration was completed in Samad al Shan and Sinaw.
"This is the first time that I have seen a power outage for so long, and I hope it would be rectified soon," Azra Aleem, an expatriate living in Oman for nearly four decades, told the Observer.
The third APSR statement said electricity supply was restored in parts of Al Seeb, Samayil, Izki and Nizwa, and parts of Al Suwaiq and Barka areas.
By 5:30 pm, power supply was restored in almost all the affected areas. The work is on to restore electricity supply to other affected areas.
Nama Group clarified that the cause of the interruption is a technical failure in one of the transmission lines of the network, stressing that work is under way to complete the return of service to the rest of the affected areas.