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Storms Shut Down Amazon Cloud Service, Chicago’s Midway Airport

Netflix, Pinterest and Instagram were among the millions of businesses and people without power over the weekend as a series of deadly storms moved across the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic.

Lightning in Virginia on June 29 took out part of Amazon Web Services — the company’s cloud-based computing service — affecting hundreds of companies, The Boston Globe reports. Netflix, Pinterest and Instagram shut down for hours, although other Amazon customers, including Intercontinental Hotels, Fox Entertainment, Unilever and Spotify, reported any service disruptions.

A day earlier, Chicago’s Midway International Airport cancelled or diverted 85 flights for about four hours after a power outage darkened runways and shut down the airport, Fox News reports.

The storms hit utility companies hard. According to Bloomberg Businessweek, about 3 million people from Virginia to New Jersey were without power, and some areas may have to wait until July 9 for electricity to be restored.

In the Washington area, 235,194 Pepco Holdings customers were without power, the news service reports.

American Electric Power said 1.4 million customers in Virginia, West Virginia, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky were affected at the storm’s peak.

About 1 million of Dominion Resources’ 2.4 million customers in Virginia lost power because of the storm. The utility is the state’s largest. As of July 2, Dominion said 233,212 were still without power.

Meanwhile, PowerSecure International said its utility services team deployed resources over the weekend to storm damaged areas of Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Virginia to assist utilities with power restoration efforts. As of July 2, the company had about 125 linemen in the field working to restore power. The company said it expects crews could be deployed for these emergency services well into the week.

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One thought on “Storms Shut Down Amazon Cloud Service, Chicago’s Midway Airport

  1. More impetus to evolve more quickly towards a de-centralised and distributed/embedded electrical generation and distribution to limit the regional, or wider, impacts of grid outages. Also, highlights to need for sufficient on-site power generation for critical business continuity systems and services. Islanded (for lineman safety during outages) partially/fully self-powered sites and communities linked by a smartgrid inter-connecting network for power sharing/commerce has to be the way forward.

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