A major upgrade of Powerco's electricity network is underway in the Rangitikei district.
Powerco is investing close to $600,000 upgrading a 4.5km stretch of its network between the Pukepapa substation and Marton.
In the first stage of the upgrade, taking place this week, about 30 workers are replacing the 33,000 volt sub transmission cross arms on 10 power poles on Pukepapa Rd, closest to the substation.
This effort alone represents an investment of $27,000 by Powerco in the local electricity network.
Powerco Systems and Performance Engineer Ken Pattie said as safety was Powerco’s top priority, the power needed to be switched off while the work was being carried out.
Mr Pattie said the company was taking the relatively unusual step of using multiple work gangs to replace a number of cross arms at once, to minimise the effect on customers.
About 1080 properties were without power for up to four hours on Wednesday, October 2.
“Sometimes we have to switch off the network to undertake major works like this. Our aim is to complete this important upgrade as quickly and efficiently as possible, so our customers will face the least interruption," Mr Pattie said.