Tokyo Electric Power to Force Scheduled Blackout

Japan may start scheduled blackouts in an eastern part of the country Monday to cope with possible power shortages, the industry minister said Sunday.

The region is likely to face substantial power shortages starting Monday following a powerful quake on Friday, Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Banri Kaieda said at a news conference.

The region is covered by Tokyo Electric Power Co. <9501> and Tohoku Electric Power Co. <9506>.
In Tokyo Electric Power’s case, its service region will be divided into five blocks and each block will have blackouts for three hours a day by rotation, the Agency for Natural Resources and Energy said.

Such scheduled blackouts are expected to continue for several weeks, Tetsuhiro Hosono, chief of the agency, told a press conference.

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