Oahu residents are being asked to scale back their energy use again this evening to help stave off further blackouts throughout the island.

Last night, Hawaiian Electric Co. deliberately cut power in Nuu­anu, Pacific Heights and Kalihi Valley, as well as East Honolulu neighborhoods, in order to prevent an island-wide blackout. A total of about 27,000 HECO customers were without power at some point Monday evening.

Kahe Power Plant

Kahe Power Plant

Flickr/Travis Thurston

The utility attributed the power outages to problems with several of its generating units.

AES, the island’s only coal plant , is working to repair a boil tube leak. Its energy output capacity has been reduced from 180 megawatts to 82 mw. Repairs are ongoing at the Kalaeloa plant, reducing output at the 208-mw generating unit by half. Meanwhile, a generator at HECO’s Kahe power plant was taken offline.

The generating units are still undergoing repairs, according to a Tuesday press release from HECO.

HECO also noted that Oahu’s North Shore wind farms are not expected to produce much energy this evening due to weather conditions.

HECO has apologized for the outages, which last night came at an inopportune time for college football fans who were watching the Ohio State Buckeyes beat the Oregon Ducks in the national championship game.

“We understand the difficulty this created for customers, but it made a real difference and helped us avoid more widespread outages,” HECO spokesman Darren Pai said in a press release. “As a precaution, we’re asking for conservation again tonight because your support helps us avoid a possible emergency situation.”

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