Buenos Aires power supply disrupted in heatwave
- 30 December 2013
- From the section Latin America & Caribbean
Public sector workers in the Argentine capital of Buenos Aires have been told not to come to work on Monday in an effort to save electricity.
The city has been experiencing power shortages as air conditioning use has soared as residents try to keep cool during a severe heatwave.
Some neighbourhoods have been without power for two weeks, with temperatures rising well over 35 degrees Celsius.
Argentina's ageing power grid has been struggling to keep up with demand.
Public sector workers in the city were asked to stay at home all day Monday, while those in Buenos Aires province were told to leave work at noon.
On Sunday night, electricity demand reached a record high for a non-working day, as residents turned on fans and air conditioning units in an attempt to cool down homes.
City officials held emergency meetings with federal officials on Sunday in an effort to co-ordinate assistance to those left without power for days.
An estimated 11.000 people still had no electricity over the weekend. Hundreds of thousands had suffered power cuts over the preceding weeks.
In some Buenos Aires neighbourhoods residents took to the streets in protest, banging pots and pans to demand that city officials do more to restore power supply to their areas.
The heatwave is reported to be the worst to hit the city in 40 years.