The night the lights went out in Cd’A

Print Article

In his 2015 New York Times bestseller “Lights Out,” journalist Ted Koppel explores the terrifying vulnerability of our nation to a cyberattack that would shut down power indefinitely.

Sound vaguely familiar?

Thank goodness, the outage that knocked out power in thousands of Coeur d’Alene-area homes and businesses Monday night lasted only hours, not days or weeks or months. But for those who scrambled in the dark to do what needed to be done, those hours were reality’s kick in complacency’s shin: We are almost helpless without the modern convenience — no, the necessity — of electricity.

Imagine the added anguish if at the same time all our communications were down. Instead of being able to use your smartphone to check avistautilities.com to get updates or, in the event of an emergency, call 911, you’re stuck. And what if it’s winter and you have no alternate source for heat? What if it’s scorching outside and you have no way to cool down? What if your food rots? If your water doesn’t flow?

We interrupt this apocalyptic preview with the reminder again that Monday’s outage was a mere inconvenience and not a pervasive threat to survival. What thousands of locals experienced was the result of a substation malfunction, not a nuclear detonation at high altitude from a North Korean missile that took down the three U.S. power grids Americans depend upon for their very existence.

While not encouraging panic or even conversion to the redoubt/prepper movements, we are suggesting that you prepare for what is inevitable. Power will occasionally fail. And when it does, you should have plenty of fresh water, candles, flashlights with batteries and foodstuffs to endure the inconvenience. A battery-powered radio is also a good idea.

An interesting experiment is to compare how long you can go comfortably without electricity in your home vs. how long you can go without your smartphone. For many, the latter will be much harder than the former, which is a frightening thought indeed.

Let’s hope we don’t lose both for any extended period of time. Then it really will be lights out.

Print Article

Read More Editorial

How do you define happiness?

September 15, 2019 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press As today’s news article on page A8 brightly reveals, you’re living in the sixth happiest state in the entire nation. That’s the official opinion of a website called WalletHub.com, which put all sort...

Comments

Read More

Williams leaving won’t elevate Cardinal fortunes

September 13, 2019 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press Note Sept. 27, 2019, on your calendars, North Idaho College sports fans. Somewhere down the line, look back on it and do some comparison work. On Sept. 27, Al Williams will formally retire as the s...

Comments

Read More

Never forget to pass along key lessons

September 11, 2019 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press Where were you at 5:46 a.m. 18 years ago today? And at 6:03 a.m. that day, what, exactly, were you doing? Most of you reading this will be able to answer those questions without hesitation. At 5:46...

Comments

Read More

Planning ahead for tomorrow’s roads, highways

September 08, 2019 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press Thank you, Idaho Transportation Department. Thanks for the dramatic improvements to roads and highways throughout our region. Now that the summer road construction season is winding down, motorists ...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(208) 664-8176
215 N. Second St
Coeur d'Alene, Idaho 83814

©2019 The Coeur d'Alene Press Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X