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Toronto map of rolling Hydro blackouts

Posted by Chris Bateman / July 9, 2013

toronto rolling blackoutsAs Toronto's post deluge clean-up continues tonight, Toronto Hydro is triggering rolling blackouts in an area bound by St. Clair, Spadina, Jane, and the lake shore in an effort to ease strain on the fragile electricity grid.

Earlier today Rob Ford described the city's power network as "hanging on a thread." Flood-damaged substations at Richview and Manby in the western portion of downtown are making restoring regular service something of a challenge.

A spokesperson for Toronto Hydro said around 23,000 customers - that's buildings, not people - will see their power cycle on and off until late Tuesday evening (fingers crossed.) A total of 43,000 hydro customers are still without power city-wide.

Until recently, it wasn't clear how the sporadic blackouts were organized - the official outage map is having a failure all of its own. Now there's a handy collaborative Google Map assembled by Kerry Wall, a web tech at CBC News and victim of the darkness, to help keep track of the cuts.

A moment the lights came back on for good (fingers crossed again) in the area bound by Dundas West south to Queensway and Lower Spadina west to Dufferin.

Here are the areas currently experiencing "load shedding," the technical name for what's going on.

UPDATE: 15:27

Just 600 without power now according to Toronto Hydro. They're still urging frugal use of electricity.

UPDATE: 14:56

Lights are still coming back on in Etobicoke according to Toronto Hydro. Down to just 5,000 customers without electricity.

UPDATE: 14:02

Toronto Hydro now says 9,000 customers are without power in Etobicoke and engineers hope to (finally) restore power by this evening. More than 300,000 gallons of water had to be pumped out of the flooded Manby station before the equipment could be inspected for damage.

According to Toronto Hydro's Twitter page, the failure at Manby had a domino effect, knocking out 17 more stations.

UPDATE: 10:25

Just to draw your attention to a comment below by Kerry Wall, the creator of the map.

"Toronto Hydro released Twitpics of Google Maps of the areas they say are affected by the Manby station flood. I added them to the map. I still don't have information about other areas affected."

"There may be rolling blackouts today. I'll do my best to keep the map up to date based on Toronto Hydro information, but it remains publicly editable in case anybody wants to help."

UPDATE: 23:30

Hydro Toronto says the rolling blackouts have stopped for the night but more could be on the way tomorrow. 20,000 customers are still without power.

View Incomplete crowdsourced Toronto blackout map in a larger map

Chris Bateman is a staff writer at blogTO. Follow him on Twitter at @chrisbateman.

Image: darkwaders/blogTO Flickr pool.



Steven / July 9, 2013 at 10:19 pm
Interestingly (and thankfully) I'm at Lansdowne and Dupont def. covered by the map and have not lost power once from last night throughout despite the fact that everything around us is out. Dollarama was open though - Traffic signals at the corner out. No street lights. I'm in a high rise - full power and def. not a generator here
CW / July 9, 2013 at 10:26 pm
In the south junction with power. Neighboring blocks are without power. Last night it was the opposite.
Kerry / July 9, 2013 at 10:34 pm
Wow, thanks for sharing the map. I started it this afternoon and just updated it with Toronto Hydro's latest round of zone boundaries. My last name is Wall; you can add it or not (it's up to you). Thanks again; hope the map helped in some way. I was in two zones and my power was out for nine hours.
s / July 9, 2013 at 10:42 pm
Right on the outskirts... I'm lucky
Donnie / July 9, 2013 at 10:51 pm
Wow.. right on the cusp at Tip Top Tailors... thankfully no cuts for us! :D
Moneesha / July 9, 2013 at 10:52 pm
Surprise! All low income neighborhoods!
A'Dreama Monet / July 9, 2013 at 10:54 pm
this map is totes wrong.
the howland they are referring to is howland street in the west end. google it.
Becca / July 9, 2013 at 11:06 pm
This map is a nice attempt but inaccurate. I live south of king, didn't have power from 11am-?? (probably 9-10pm, I was out), yet my friend north of queen had power from 6pm-onward. All I'm saying is this conveys inaccurate information.
MQ / July 9, 2013 at 11:09 pm
I'm in this zone in Dufferin Grove and I haven't lost power once. North of Bloor and a bit east, has been experiencing rolling blackouts.
Kerry / July 9, 2013 at 11:11 pm
That's not coming up for me anymore. If you have a link, that'd be awesome.
Kerry / July 9, 2013 at 11:11 pm
Anywhere, not anymore.
Kerry / July 9, 2013 at 11:15 pm
It's just a visualization of the boundaries provided by Toronto Hydro. There were lots of people within the zone who said they never lost power, and lots outside who did. Just trying to help!
leigh / July 9, 2013 at 11:21 pm
at davenport & shaw we were without power for 23 of the last 27 hours. had a few hours in the middle of the night to charge phones, power came back on around 9:30 this evening.
Kerry / July 9, 2013 at 11:32 pm
Toronto Hydro says rolling blackouts are over for today. They may resume in the morning. The map will remain publicly editable so that people can keep it up to date if rolling blackouts continue.

Toronto Hydro had not put out any boundary information about areas affected by other blackouts, so I was unable to map them.

Thanks again for linking to the map. I'm sorry if I screwed up any of Toronto Hydro's location information (my fault). Again, I was just trying to visualize the data they were putting out because their own map isn't working.

Hope power returns quickly to everyone still affected.
Pete / July 10, 2013 at 12:22 am
Swansea (from Bloor to the lake, High Park to the Humber) has been without power since about 6PM yesterday, and remains without power.
Tux / July 10, 2013 at 02:19 am
Ha ha, you west end suckers!
dave / July 10, 2013 at 03:36 am
are we getting more rains?
blah replying to a comment from Tux / July 10, 2013 at 07:16 am
I'd live in the west end without power any day over the alternative.
Kerry / July 10, 2013 at 09:18 am
Toronto Hydro released Twitpics of Google maps of the areas they say are affected by the Manby station flood. I added them to the map. I still don't have information about other areas affected.

There may be rolling blackouts today. I'll do my best to keep the map up to date based on Toronto Hydro information, but it remains publicly editable in case anybody wants to help.

Kerry / July 10, 2013 at 09:19 am
You can get to the full map at;ie=UTF8&oe=UTF8&msa=0&msid=210884096963006088668.0004e118e53f94bc4843c.
Susan / July 10, 2013 at 11:00 am
No power in Swansea since Monday 6pm, never came back
Since when is Bloor West Village/Swansea area considered low income...Someone doesn't know their city very well....
Difficult with no power but appreciate Bloor St north & can get a hot meal there
ap / July 10, 2013 at 11:00 am
I live in Swansea. We've had no power since the storm knocked it out Monday. is not a low income neighbourhood..even if it was that's not why the hydro is out!
Rick replying to a comment from Pete / July 10, 2013 at 12:33 pm
Swansea (bloor south to the lake) still out since 6pm Monday
Saurabh / July 10, 2013 at 01:27 pm
Condo building on Queensway/Windermere - was without power at 10 am this morning. not sure of current situation. also lost emergency power for a few hours yesterday evening.
Kerry / July 10, 2013 at 08:12 pm
Toronto Hydro's map ( is back so I'm going to stop updating mine.

THANK YOU to everyone who made edits, sent notes and shared the map.
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