In the midst of a heat wave that has seen temperatures climb beyond 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit), Argentina’s capital Buenos Aires was rocked by a severe power outage on Tuesday, leaving thousands of houses without energy.
High temperatures caused a surge in demand for energy to cool homes and businesses, according to electricity wholesalers Edenor and Edesur.
Edenor’s power outage, according to the National Electricity Regulatory Entity (ENRE), affected 700,000 people in the Buenos Aires area. After high-voltage lines failed at two of Edesur’s substations, 43,400 Edesur customers were left without power.
As the interruption has also hampered its purification system, AySA, which delivers drinking water in Buenos Aires, the public was forced to conserve water.
According to the National Meteorological Service (SMN) , high temperatures are likely to persist throughout the week, with maximum near 40 degrees Celsius.
“The SMN issued a warning in anticipation of a severe heat wave this week, with temperatures in the concession area potentially reaching 41°C,” Edesur wrote to its clients in an email. “In the face of rising demand, we’re working to strengthen our network,” it added.