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August 15, 2003
Which blackout(s) did you experience?
Other (please specify)
In your own words, tell the story of your experience in the blackout(s). Try to recall specific events and the people, places, and things involved; also include more general reactions, images adn last impressions?
I was not in one of the areas but my father was. When I called him he seemed uncannily calm about the prospect of being out of power for some time. I guess he was prepared or just knew he's figure something out. It seemed to me that most everyone in those areas was pretty calm about the situation, even if they were frustrated, hot, and tired.
Why did the blackouts happen, in your opinion?
Probably something really simple like the 1965 blackout that should never have happened considering they knew back then that there were problems with the way the system was set up. The whole grid system seems to need a MAJOR overhaul.
What is your opinion regarding the general causes of power failures (blackouts)?
No real opinion here
Did either blackout seem significant or shocking at the time?
Both were significant
Why did you consider the blackout(s) to be significant or insignificant?
Any time there is an extended period of time without power it affects many individuals (especially those in the emergency fields, fire, police, hospitals especially) and it affects the economy in many ways.
How did the blackout(s) affect you?
Mostly just worry for the safety and the like of family and friends in the affected areas.
What happened to your perception of the blackout(s) when you heard the news about the full scope of the event(s)?
No full reports yet, too soon
How would you compare the blackout(s) to "normal" power failures you have experienced at other times?
The impact is much greater, especially in the minds of those who know that it could possibly be days without power
Did the blackout(s) have any larger meaning in your mind?
Did the blackout(s) cause any profound crisis?
How did the blackout(s) affect your daily reliance on electricity?
No effect / same reliance
Story #239, The Blackout History Project, 15 August 2003, <http://blackout.gmu.edu/details/239/>.
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