U.S. Y2K central reports only minor problems

Top Clinton administration officials said the first Year 2000 rollover in the United States, which occurred at 7 p.m. EST, passed with no major computerglitches.

Department of Transportation Secretary Ronald Slater and Energy Secretary Bill Richardson said they were particularly concerned that problems would surface at 7 p.m. EST, which is midnight Greenwich Mean Time. Many clocks incomputer systems operating in the United States, such as those used byelectric companies and the Federal Aviation Administration, are set on Greenwich Mean Time. But the time change went smoothly, they reported.

"U.S. air traffic control systems rolled over to the Year 2000 at 7 p.m.,"Slater said. "The 10 major airlines are reporting no disruptions inservice."

Richardson said there were no major problems in U.S. facilities that provide electricity or generate nuclear power. He said there were several minor problems, including an electric plant in Wisconsin, which shut downbriefly.

He said there was an "act of sabotage at the Bonneville Power Administration in Oregon where someone cut an electrical line in a remotepart of the state."

Richardson said he spoke with his Russian counterpart four times on Friday, but there were no problems at the 29 power plants or Defense facilities inRussia.

There was a problem at the Shika power plant in Japan. Richardson said that itinvolved a part manufactured by Hitachi, but there are no similar parts inpower plants in the United States.

"Even though there are some glitches, the news is good....However, it is far too early to declare victory," he said.

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