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Old 12.03.2013, 16:43
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Power outage in Zuri West

Fresh from the press, there's a power outage in Zuri West. People had to be evacuated from the elevators at the Prime Tower. http://www.20min.ch/schweiz/zuerich/...uiert-27991591
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Old 12.03.2013, 16:44
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

The power goes out here?
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Old 12.03.2013, 16:46
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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The power goes out here?
More often than you think.


Can somebody who's acquainted with tall commercial buildings, briefly explain as to why there aren't any emergency generators in the Prime Tower?
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Old 12.03.2013, 16:58
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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More often than you think.


Can somebody who's acquainted with tall commercial buildings, briefly explain as to why there aren't any emergency generators in the Prime Tower?
Technically it is because it is poorly designed.
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Old 12.03.2013, 17:12
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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Technically it is because it is poorly designed.
Certainly, but isn't there a building ordinance which architects have to adhere to?
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Old 12.03.2013, 17:17
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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Certainly, but isn't there a building ordinance which architects have to adhere to?
You'd think.

Even the Greeks are able to keep their lifts running during a power cut:

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Old 12.03.2013, 17:26
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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Fresh from the press, there's a power outage in Zuri West. People had to be evacuated from the elevators at the Prime Tower. http://www.20min.ch/schweiz/zuerich/...uiert-27991591

And there this morning was an outage in parts of Oerlikon and Seebach
http://www.blick.ch/news/schweiz/zue...id2205807.html
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Old 12.03.2013, 17:38
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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Certainly, but isn't there a building ordinance which architects have to adhere to?
If for example they have a cable problem then generators won't help.
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Old 12.03.2013, 23:37
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

Swiss germany is falling apart, not even electricity anymore. The future clearly lies in Romandie.
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Old 13.03.2013, 00:26
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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Certainly, but isn't there a building ordinance which architects have to adhere to?
This might be a question to a specialist. But basically, the architects plan the "shell" for electric installations, but not the electrical installations. What electrical structures are established in the end is up to the owner.

And an emergency generator only makes sense if that thing is independent from any outside power. The airport has a generator, so that in case of an outage, electric current in the passenger terminals is back within minutes, and in the cargo terminals, the GAC and the technical section within less than a quarter hour.

I cannot tell you how many buildings in the Zürich area have such emergency generators, but was told that the number is rather small.

The regulations say that it has to be garanteed that people can be evacuated in a suitable time, and this was met, as all people in the elevators got evacuated within a quarter hour.

I don't know what they had done, had there been some 5 people in wheelchairs up in the restaurant ? Somebody mentioned that the wardrobe was unattended at the time the guests were to get evacuated. I would expect that the personnel does not leave first but last. The building was not in flames, just without electric current, and so no reason for panic. YES, they internally now can analyse details, but overall, things apparently worked quite well
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Old 13.03.2013, 06:56
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

Apparently, the outage lasted for an entire 4 hours, the up side was, that for once there was no traffic.
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Old 13.03.2013, 08:16
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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More often than you think.

Can somebody who's acquainted with tall commercial buildings, briefly explain as to why there aren't any emergency generators in the Prime Tower?
It's cost vs. risk. The cost of installation and maintenance of emergency generators is very high, but the overall calculated risk that such an installation mitigates is rather low. For an office block, the occurrence of a power failure is low, and the severity of the effects of the power failure is probably assessed as low-medium. For a hospital, airport, etc. the occurrence is the same, but the severity of the effects is very high.

On the other hand, I have noticed that there seems to be more instances of prolonged power failures here than what I noticed in the UK. From what I have read, the biggest causes seem to be building activities and cable-joint failures.
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Old 13.03.2013, 08:36
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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Apparently, the outage lasted for an entire 4 hours, the up side was, that for once there was no traffic.
According to VBZ, there were ERSATZBUSSE
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Old 13.03.2013, 08:39
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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It's cost vs. risk. The cost of installation and maintenance of emergency generators is very high, but the overall calculated risk that such an installation mitigates is rather low. For an office block, the occurrence of a power failure is low, and the severity of the effects of the power failure is probably assessed as low-medium. For a hospital, airport, etc. the occurrence is the same, but the severity of the effects is very high.

On the other hand, I have noticed that there seems to be more instances of prolonged power failures here than what I noticed in the UK. From what I have read, the biggest causes seem to be building activities and cable-joint failures.
The number of power failures has clearly increased in the past 10 years. Cannot tell you why, but obvious it is. My quite personal impression is that often the basic network is not upgraded even when the number of buildings trebles. Those in charge of course will not accept such considerations.
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Old 13.03.2013, 09:49
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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It's cost vs. risk. The cost of installation and maintenance of emergency generators is very high, but the overall calculated risk that such an installation mitigates is rather low. For an office block, the occurrence of a power failure is low, and the severity of the effects of the power failure is probably assessed as low-medium. For a hospital, airport, etc. the occurrence is the same, but the severity of the effects is very high.

On the other hand, I have noticed that there seems to be more instances of prolonged power failures here than what I noticed in the UK. From what I have read, the biggest causes seem to be building activities and cable-joint failures.
Interesting, but wouldn't you agree, that Switzerland's most prestigious and tallest building to be state of the art and well prepared for such incidents.
To me, this simply exemplifies the lack of standards this country has throughout many industries.
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Old 13.03.2013, 10:17
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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Interesting, but wouldn't you agree, that Switzerland's most prestigious and tallest building to be state of the art and well prepared for such incidents.
To me, this simply exemplifies the lack of standards this country has throughout many industries.
With Arnie in downtown ZH yesterday, I was kind of expecting him together with Bruce Willis to have another go at opening a Planet Hollywood restaurant or at least busting through the elevator ceiling and freeing some damsels in distress.
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Old 13.03.2013, 11:22
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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Interesting, but wouldn't you agree, that Switzerland's most prestigious and tallest building to be state of the art and well prepared for such incidents.
To me, this simply exemplifies the lack of standards this country has throughout many industries.
We had a power failure in our office a few weeks ago, early in the morning when it was still dark. Most people went trooping outside. Of course to do this, you had to use the stairs which a) have no windows and b) no emergency lights. We had to use the torch functions on our mobile phones to navigate the stairs.

I raised this issue with the health & safety guys, who were completely oblivious to it; it really opened their eyes. The building's facility management finally agreed it would be a 'good idea'..

We only had a fire alarm system installed in 2004/2005. They recently installed fire-protection materials where pipes pass through wooden walls in the office, despite the fact that there's a door right next to it, which ISN'T a fire door. Some of the signs to the emergency exits are printed on paper and sellotaped to the wall....

It's a joke, it really is; especially when we have a health and safety audit every year, which we always pass with flying colours!
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Old 13.03.2013, 12:17
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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Interesting, but wouldn't you agree, that Switzerland's most prestigious and tallest building to be state of the art and well prepared for such incidents.
To me, this simply exemplifies the lack of standards this country has throughout many industries.
What you say apparently was said by many, including the media, yesterday. I expect the Prime Tower to combine forces with some new buildings just now erected around it later on. I mean, the area there was, to put it with "The Great Gatsby" our "Valley of Ashes" not too long ago

You however sound a bit like the honourable Federal Defence Minister, by demanding that Switzerland has to have the best ....

Let's hope that those in charge try to work on the lesson they got yesterday
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Old 13.03.2013, 12:21
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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We had a power failure in our office a few weeks ago, early in the morning when it was still dark. Most people went trooping outside. Of course to do this, you had to use the stairs which a) have no windows and b) no emergency lights. We had to use the torch functions on our mobile phones to navigate the stairs.

I raised this issue with the health & safety guys, who were completely oblivious to it; it really opened their eyes. The building's facility management finally agreed it would be a 'good idea'..

We only had a fire alarm system installed in 2004/2005. They recently installed fire-protection materials where pipes pass through wooden walls in the office, despite the fact that there's a door right next to it, which ISN'T a fire door. Some of the signs to the emergency exits are printed on paper and sellotaped to the wall....

It's a joke, it really is; especially when we have a health and safety audit every year, which we always pass with flying colours!
Emergency lights ? You don't have CANDLES ready to cope with such things in decent style ?
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Old 13.03.2013, 13:15
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Re: Power outage in Zuri West

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Emergency lights ? You don't have CANDLES ready to cope with such things in decent style ?
Well, one guy here also suggested that we have torches located at strategic locations in the stairs because (quote) 'when the power goes off, there won't be any power for the emergency lights either'.

We're not allowed to light candles in the office (came from Christmas time) as is poses a serious health and safety risk. At least, for some areas, they've seen the light..

Otherwise, going back on topic to the Zuri West power outage scandal, I can only guess that the medium-voltage network isn't designed with much redundancy in mind or any real ability to safely reconfigure the system if one section fails. If I look at the distribution network within a (non-nuclear)power plant, there is redundancy everywhere; you can always use the switching elements within the network to safely reconfigure the system in case one section fails.
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