Remaining customers expected to be reconnected by end of week – 4.30pm update

Wednesday, February 15, 2023

There are currently 8,819 customers without power across Powerco’s network – down considerably from the 19,040 customers disconnected at 4.30pm yesterday.

The bulk of customers without power are in the Coromandel with 5,426 customers currently waiting to be restored. This is down from 6,883 customers this morning.  Power was restored to the Tairua substation this afternoon. As it enlivens this evening, many of those customers are expected to be reconnected. 

Disconnected customers also remain in the following regions:

  • Taranaki – 1,109 customers (down from 1,654 this morning). Helicopters were used to help assess faults near Patea and Motukawa. 
  • Wairarapa – 704 customers (down from 905 this morning). Work is still underway to resolve an outage at the Tinui substation, which has significant flood damage and is currently not operational. Backfeed options are being explored, and a tree needs to be removed, before crews can restore power, hopefully tomorrow.
  • South Waikato – 650 customers (down from 1,223 this morning).
  • Bay of Plenty – 407 customers (down from 698 this morning).
  • Manawatū – 331 customers (down from 451 this morning). Road closures and some flooding/slips are causing access issues in Palmerston North.
  • Whanganui – 188 customers (down from 783 this morning). 

Powerco Head of Network Operations Caz Haydon says although crews are hoping to reconnect as many of those remaining customers as possible over the next 24 hours, ongoing access issues in some areas mean people should prepare to be without power for the rest of the week. 

“We’ve made some good progress to reconnect customers but continue to face issues around access. It’s really difficult for us to give estimated restoration times when we’re still impacted by the conditions on the ground, but we also appreciate this is the information our customers want. 

“While we are doing our best to reconnect as many of our customers as possible, we’re asking those without power to prepare to be without supply until the end of the week. If any customers have welfare concerns, they should reach out to their local Civil Defence for support.” 

Caz says faults continue to trend downwards, with crews prioritising restorations by scale (the largest outages impacting the most customers) and duration (customers who have been without power the longest).

“We also have vegetation contractors working alongside crews to clear trees and branches as needed. Civil Defence and Waka Kotahi are also helping crews access areas with road closures, so that power can be restored wherever possible.

“Our crews will continue working into the evening as long as safely possible but will eventually need to stand down, and start carrying out repairs again in the morning.

“Thank you to those customers still waiting to be reconnected, and a reminder to keep an eye on our outage map for updates.”

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