Myanmar's biggest cities hit by brief power outages

Myanmar's biggest cities hit by brief power outages

The Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon is Myanmar’s biggest and most sacred pagoda. (Bangkok Post photo)
The Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon is Myanmar’s biggest and most sacred pagoda. (Bangkok Post photo)

A power blackout briefly hit Myanmar's main urban centres and far-flung towns on Friday, including commercial hub Yangon and parts of the capital Nay Pyi Taw, authorities and AFP correspondents said.

Yangon Electricity Supply Corporation reported a "temporary power outage in Yangon region today at 13:35" (2.05pm Thailand time), adding that it was working to restore power.

Myanmar's second-biggest city of Mandalay, the eastern town of Hpa-an, southern Mon state and parts of Rakhine state in the west also lost power, residents told AFP.

Parts of the military-built capital Naypyidaw also experienced outages.

By 2.10pm power had been restored, Yangon Electricity Supply Corporation said in a statement.

Local media reported an official from Nay Pyi Taw's Electricity Department as saying the national grid had suffered a "system breakdown", without elaborating.

Power outages are common in Myanmar due to a creaky and outdated electricity grid, with demand regularly outstripping supply during the sweltering summer months.

The country has been in turmoil since a Feb 1 military coup that ousted the government of civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

Yangon's state-backed electricity provider warned residents in July that electricity supply could be disrupted if they continued refusing to pay their power bills -- part of an ongoing boycott of junta services.

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