THE name Lorenz Posenecker is not as well known in Hong Kong as it deserves to be. Mr Posenecker and his friend Bendysche Layton were largely responsible for introducing electricity into the colony. In order to accomplish this they enlisted the support of the Taipans Paul Chater and John Bell-Irving and formed the Hong Kong Electric Company. The original power station was erected on the site of an old cemetery at Wing Fung Street, Wan Chai, the corpses having been moved to Happy Valley first. Central District was lit up for the first time on December 1, 1890. Everything did not run smoothly. The lights in Caine Road went out at 9.30 pm, 31/2 hours after they had been switched on. A few days later Central District was plunged into darkness during a tropical rainstorm. The problem was sorted out and there was not another breakdown for 26 years. The day after the lights were switched on, the China Mail relished in reprinting a report from the Shanghai Mercury of an explosion in the telegraph office of that city: The disaster was caused by 'an ignorant coolie or native workman, employed by the Electric Company' who had tied an electric light wire to a telegraph wire with 'a piece of stout string.' 'While the weather remained dry no evil consequences ensued, but a shower of rain wetting the string transformed it into a conductor, and the terrific current from the light wire passed into the telegraph line in question. 'We need scarcely remind our readers of the frequency with which we have animadverted on the dangers arising from the reckless and promiscuous fashion in which the Electric Company have been permitted to put up their electric light wires over the streets of the Settlements.'