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BL&P restores 60 per cent of electricity


BL&P restores 60 per cent of electricity
Barbados Light & Power: Electricity has been fully restored following damage from Hurricane Elsa. (Picture by Shanice King/FILE)

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Barbados Light & Power, in an update, said that as of 11 a.m. today, crews have safely restored electricity to approximately 60 per cent of customers across the island, following the widespread damage caused by Hurricane Elsa yesterday.

Additionally, the company is aiming to have electricity restored to 80 per cent of customers within 48 hours.

Initial damage assessments indicate approximately 200 poles and 45 transformers to be replaced and around 1 km of wires to be restrung. There was also damage sustained to one of the substations, which serves some of the company’s customers in eastern parts of the island.

“This morning, our crews continue their focus on emergency issues, which pose danger to persons within their homes, critical customers and prioritising areas affecting large clusters of customers,” a statement from BL&P said.

“Restoration efforts will continue today in all parishes. We are aiming to have up to 80 per cent of our customers restored within 48 hours. Added to this, teams will continue conducting inspections across the island today. Our focus is currently on areas . . . . Our focus will then shift to areas with smaller pockets of customers.

“Of course, this is a dynamic situation, and as new information is received from our ongoing damage assessments, the prioritisation may change.”

The company said that demands on the system may also mean that restoration of service is intermittent in some areas. Customers have been asked to plan accordingly.

“Based on our initial assessments and reports being received from customers, the damage appears to be comparable to or in some instances worse, than that experienced during the passage of Tropical Storm Tomas, in 2010. As such, our initial estimate for restoration of areas, where there has been more extensive damage could take as much as one week. Once our damage assessments are completed we would be able to share a timeline for full restoration.

BL&P said Call Centre agents are in place and can be reached at 626-4300 and 626-9000. Alternately, the newly launched ECI Restore app can be used to report emergencies.

Two important safety reminders:

  • Steer clear of downed power lines. As we energise homes and businesses, the risk around downed wires becomes even greater.
  • Slow down, when driving in the vicinity of our crews. We are in several locations throughout the day and into the evening, so please be alert and cautious.

BL&P has given the assurance that while restoration will not be immediate for all customers, teams, crews and contractors are “working to the fullest extent possible, to safely return normalcy, to our daily lives”. (PR)