Belfast Telegraph

Northern Ireland shopping centre evacuated after power cut

The power cut affected around half of the building. Credit: Heather Turkington Facebook
The power cut affected around half of the building. Credit: Heather Turkington Facebook

A shopping centre in Northern Ireland was plunged into darkness and had to be evacuated following a power cut on Saturday.

It is understood the power went out in around half of the shops in Rushmere Shopping Centre in Craigavon around 1.45pm and staff and customers were advised to leave.

Pictures from the scene on social media show masses of people rushing to leave the building, with some using mobile phone torches to lead the way.

One customer, Heather Turkington (31), told the Belfast Telegraph she arrived shortly after the power went out and people were still entering the building.

"When we got there half of the building was in complete darkness. People were still arriving because they didn't know what had happened. The power was on in the Starbucks so everyone just piled in there - you could hardly move," she said.

"People were walking around using the lights on their mobile phones and we were told by staff to 'evacuate' the building, which I thought was quite dramatic.

Lights out in Debenhams, Rushmere. Just waiting for the blast of thunder now 😲

Posted by Kim McCammon on Saturday, June 29, 2019

"It was actually quite sad because there was a car show on in the centre at the time, so it was a pretty big shopping day. It was definitely an interesting shopping experience."

A Northern Ireland Electricity Networks spokesperson said the outage was due to a cable fault and it was not weather-related as many speculated online.

The centre was closed for several hours but has since been reopened and the power restored.

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