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  1. #1
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    Is their a way to make a power outage look like an accident?

    For my story, I want the villain to be able to disconnect the power to his house, as part of the his crime, but I want him to make it look natural, like an act of God, rather than deliberate human sabotage. Is that possible?

    I asked an electrician for research and he said he could not think of any way to do that, because if it's a crime that is going to get the police involved, and they are going to look over things, he says he cannot think of any way it couldn't be discovered as a set up.

    So I was wondering if anyone knew, is it possible to make a power outage to one house along, look like a natural failure?

    I asked some people and they gave some ideas, that would involve storms, but I don't think I should use a storm, cause it would come off as a deux ex machina to the reader I think, that a storm happened to be there for the villain's plan to work.

    What do you think though? Does anyone have any ideas? Thanks for the input. I really appreciate it.
    Last edited by ironpony; 01-25-2016 at 06:44 PM.

  2. #2
    Rogue Mutt
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    Overload the fuse box, cut the lines to the house, a localized Electromagnetic pulse...

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rogue Mutt View Post
    Overload the fuse box, cut the lines to the house, a localized Electromagnetic pulse...
    Okay thanks. As far as overloading the box goes, all you have to do is flip the breaker back on, if this happens, as I understand it.

    For my story, I need the power to not be able to switch back up on for at least half a day.

    Cutting the wire will also look like sabotage rather than an act of God, and he doesn't have the technology to create EMP.

    As far as pulling a tree down, any neighbor of his could see this, and he cannot have any witnesses to what he is doing.

  4. #4
    Rogue Mutt
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    Quote Originally Posted by ironpony View Post
    Okay thanks. As far as overloading the box goes, all you have to do is flip the breaker back on, if this happens, as I understand it.

    For my story, I need the power to not be able to switch back up on for at least half a day.

    Cutting the wire will also look like sabotage rather than an act of God, and he doesn't have the technology to create EMP.

    As far as pulling a tree down, any neighbor of his could see this, and he cannot have any witnesses to what he is doing.
    Creating an EMP is easy. Google it.

  5. #5
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    Okay thanks. I looked it up. However, this would take too long and the villain, has to improvise and only has a total of five minutes to knock the power out, in my case.

  6. #6
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    An EMP would damage electronic equipment. Light bulbs wouldn't be bothered.

    My personal view, as someone who has been doing electrical; work since I was old enough to hold my father's flashlight, is that there is nothing you can do that would look accidental in that time-frame and guarantee lights out. Tripping the main breaker might work because the average house owner might check the breakers, but probably not think to check the main breaker, or even recognize which position was off. And since it's dark, and most people don't keep a flashlight handy (or know how to use their phone as a light) they might give up and call the electric company, which might take an hour or two to get someone out there.

    It's iffy, but desperate moves sometimes work (though too many convenient pieces of luck are not a writer's friend.

    How about setting off smoke alarms? Or better yet, start a fire.

  7. #7
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    The only way I can think of is if he stood on a tree branch and made it fall on a power line, but that would put his own life in danger as well as be a difficult feat to accomplish.
    "Don't try to control the reader, just help them along." -- my mom

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