Three more electrical substations targeted and damaged

This situation is officially out of control, though it probably has been for a while and we simply weren’t hearing much about it. 

Only a few weeks after people shot up two electrical substations in North Carolina, someone took out three of them in Washington State. And they did it on Christmas morning. More than 14,000 buildings lost power in Pierce County, Washington. 

Two of the break-ins were at Tacoma Public Utilities substations and the third was at a Puget Sound Energy station, according to the sheriff’s office in Pierce County, which encompasses Tacoma.

At least initially, much like the situation in North Carolina, authorities don’t appear to have any idea who might have done it. Thankfully, utility workers were able to restore power to nearly all of the homes by the end of the day. 

Fortunately, the temperatures in the county yesterday ranged from the mid-40s to the low 50s, so it wasn’t as much of a life-threatening event as it would have been had it taken place in one of the areas currently being crushed by the bomb cyclone blizzards.

It doesn’t sound as if this was a shooting event like the attacks in North Carolina. Officials are describing it as a case of someone “breaking in” and “vandalizing” the equipment at the stations. NBC News quoted one utility official who characterized it as the equipment being “deliberately targeted by physical attacks.”

The authorities may not have any suspects yet or even a motive, but this was clearly another coordinated effort to bring down the power grid. Nobody “accidentally” goes into three substations and destroys the equipment.

This isn’t an attack on the government or law enforcement or some particular demographic group. This is an attack on our entire society. It’s an attack on decency. It’s an attack on civilization. And doing it on Christmas morning makes it all the more obvious that evil people are involved. If this had happened in or around Buffalo, New York yesterday, where the temperatures were below zero and the streets were shut down by several feet of snow, a lot of people would probably have died.

If the FBI can be bothered to stop censoring people on social media long enough to do some actual work, they should be looking into this. We may just be seeing a series of copycat sickos acting randomly, but if this is some sort of widespread, coordinated domestic terror operation, they need to get to the bottom of it. And assuming the perpetrators can be identified and captured, they need to be charged with a lot more than simple vandalism. The phrase “domestic terrorism” gets abused in the press quite a bit these days, particularly on the left, but these attacks should certainly qualify for the label.

At the risk of repeating myself, I will add that this is yet another example of why our energy infrastructure demands significant, systemic upgrades. The technology we use today is simply too old, too frail, and too vulnerable to these types of attacks. The grid needs to be hardened and made “smarter” to prevent the instability and outages we are seeing currently. And we must get back to producing enough energy to meet all of our needs and be able to sustain surges in demand. The big question remains who will pay for all of this, but we need to figure it out quickly.

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