Google: UK data center operators battle the heat with hosepipes, while Google and Oracle face service disruption

Jul 20, 2022 | Posted by MadalineDunn

The UK’s heatwave pushed temperatures to a record-breaking 40C this week, causing transport delays and service disruptions. To battle the heat, some data center operators have been using hose pipes to cool their facilities. According to a report by Bloomberg, staff in London have been spraying air conditioner units with water from hosepipes. 

Speaking about this, Adrian Trevelyan, After Market Director at Airedale International, told Bloomberg: “Many data centers in London will have people on the roof with hoses at the moment,” adding that it’s occurring “within the M25 and into the City.”

The dangers posed to data center operations in a heatwave were witnessed by Google and Oracle, which both reportedly shut down their equipment in an attempt to prevent permanent damage from being done to their hardware components. This resulted in a number of outages.

Google attributed the outage to a cooling-related failure and according to a DCD report, some of the services affected were Google Cloud, Persistent Disk, and Autoscaling and by 2200 BST, some users were still being impacted with HDD-backed Persistent Disk volumes showing IO errors. That said, according to the tech giant, its services are now back up and running. 

Meanwhile, in a status update on its website, Oracle noted: “As a result of unseasonal temperatures in the region, a subset of cooling infrastructure within the UK South (London) Data Centre experienced an issue. This led to a subset of our service infrastructure needed to be powered down to prevent uncontrolled hardware failures.”

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