Want to read more? Subscribe Now or Sign In
Hide ( X )
  • THE CRIME REPORT - Your Complete Criminal Justice Resource

  • Investigative News Network
  • Welcome to the Crime Report. Today is

Crime and Justice News

Report Says Terrorist Attack on Power Grid Could Be Deadly, Costly

November 15, 2012 10:38:38 am

Terrorists could black out large segments of the United States for weeks or months by attacking the power grid and damaging hard-to-replace components that are crucial to making it work, the National Academy of Sciences said Wednesday, according to the New York Times. By blowing up substations or transmission lines with explosives or by firing projectiles at them from a distance, the report said, terrorists could cause cascading failures and damage parts that would take months to repair or replace. In the meantime, it warned, people could die from the cold or the excessive heat, and the economy could suffer hundreds of billions of dollars in damage.

While the report is the most authoritative yet on the subject, the grid's vulnerability has long been obvious to independent engineers and to the electric industry itself, which has intermittently tried to rehearse responses. Changes in the electric industry have made the grid more vulnerable in recent years, experts say. The grid was mostly built to serve the needs of individual utilities, but regulators have cut the generation companies loose from the companies that transport and distribute power to foster a competitive market. That has resulted in far more electricity being shipped much greater distances and in difficulty winning consensus to build new lines.

« Article List
No Comments yet

TCR at a Glance

How Police Can Reduce Wrongful Convictions

new & notable August 27, 2014

A new paper by Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batts and two other leaders in policing and legal advocacy calls for a systemic over...

‘Till Death Do Us Part’

August 26, 2014

South Carolina is among the top ten states in deaths from domestic violence. But it’s not alone in its failure to address what some...

The Criminal Justice Debt Penalty

new & notable August 22, 2014

"Mere contact" with the criminal justice system can cause long-term financial instability, according to a new paper from the John Jay Col...