Agh, thank you so much! With all these BLC sites down, my webcomics reading for today was significantly less awesome. (Which is really bad, because Saturdays are bad days for webcomics even without half the good ones being down.)
This is the first outtage I've had with them in four years. This kind of thing could happen to anybody. The only way to prevent it is to mirror the datacenter in another city. It's called a "smoking hole" solution, and it gets pricey.
Just stating what has happened with them in the past; they may have sacked and reorganized completely since then - I don't know. I just know that in 2004, their hosting service was being persistently dodgy to the point of sites being totally unreachable for several hours a day on a regular basis; Illiad went around with them for what seemed like a month or more trying to get them to fix the problem before he finally threw up his hands and moved the whole thing.
In a smoking hole situation, the servers are destroyed too. Here, I see two clear weaknesses: There was only one power room (no redundancy), and it was in the same structure as the datacenter (allowing the explosion to cause heavy damage to the first floor wiring). All that said, I think it's amazing and wonderful that no one was injured in this incident.
I got an alert from my hosting company this morning; "Due to a fire and explosion due to an electrical short at the third-party data centre hosting this machine, ns3.ukservers.net is currently offline. This should have no discernable effect on our services."
WOW... Reminds me of the time the West Coast went down (Some twit with a backhoe pulled up the thigh-thick cable going over Donner Pass... Totally severed it, IIRC-) and we were down for only a few hours before everything was re-routed and back up. It amazed the heck out of the folks who knew the backstory of the Net, because apparently- when the Defense Dept. first started putting it together, they hoped that communications would only be down for a few days in the case of a catastrophic failure like that. (But I may be mis-remembering that part of the tale,)