Crews race to repair Ukraine’s energy system as hospitals suspend planned surgeries after Russian strikes

Repair work on critical energy infrastructure facilities across Ukraine continued Wednesday, in an effort to fix the ongoing power deficit caused by Russian strikes.

“The gradual restoration of the power system after the missile attacks continues…The situation in the east of the country remains difficult — last night, the enemy one more time shelled several infrastructure facilities, while the temperature in the region reached -17 C,” Ukrenergo, Ukraine’s state-run energy operator said Wednesday.

“Repair crews are working to eliminate the consequences of the missile attack in Kyiv and Odesa regions, restoring power supply to the regions under backup schemes,” it continued, adding that there was still a “significant deficit” in the nation’s power system, triggering limits on consumption.

Some background: On Monday, Russia unleashed a wave of drone and missile attacks across Ukraine, targeting the country’s energy infrastructure. Ukraine has been facing a wide assault on critical infrastructure and power sources since early October.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said the strikes caused extensive power outages in several regions, including Kyiv and Odesa.

Power deficit: Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said that after Monday’s attacks “power engineers promise to eliminate the consequences” in the coming days.

“At the same time the power deficit in the energy system will remain. Currently, it is 19% of the forecast consumption.”

On Tuesday, Ukraine’s health ministry announced the suspension of planned surgeries in an effort to insulate the medical system from the impacts of rolling power outages.

“They will be carried out when the situation around the supply of electricity stabilizes…all emergency medical care will be provided to patients in full,” the statement said.

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