All of Europe will face mobile service outages due to power sources

If some mobile networks are disconnected in the coming months due to power outages or energy shortages, mobile phones may no longer work across Europe. The likelihood of power shortages has increased following Russia’s decision to stop supplying gas through Europe’s main supply route due to the situation in Ukraine. The problem has been aggravated by the shutdown of several French nuclear power plants for maintenance.

Industry representatives fear a harsh winter could put a strain on Europe’s communications network, forcing organizations and governments to take preventive measures. Four telecom executives say there are now not enough backup systems in many European countries to handle major power outages, increasing the possibility of mobile phone blackouts.

Cellular antennas’ thousands of backup batteries can run out due to power outages, but the European Union is working to ensure that communications can still take place. Germany, Sweden, France and other nations are among them.

There are more than 500,000 telecommunications towers in Europe, and the majority of them contain backup batteries that can power the mobile antennas for around 30 minutes.

France along with Sweden, Germany and Italy are also at risk. French electricity distributor Enedis has reportedly come up with a plan that could, in the worst-case scenario, lead to power cuts lasting up to two hours, according to two people with knowledge of the matter. General blackouts would only occasionally affect specific regions of the country. The sources say essential services including hospitals, law enforcement and government will not be affected.

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