Power outage caused by line fault

Many New Providence residents were without electricity yesterday as a result of a fault in a Bahamas Power and Light (BPL) transmission line.

“We can confirm that there was a fault on a transmission line out of Blue Hills Power Station, which triggered an outage affecting all customers fed by the station,” BPL said in a statement.

“This affects customers from Gladstone Road headed east. The Clifton Pier Power Station remains online feeding western New Providence.”

The outage happened just before 2 p.m.

Nearly two hours later, BPL confirmed that the majority of customers had their power restored.

“We are able to report that all customers have been restored out of Blue Hills with the exception of our Ernest Street customers,” it said in a statement.

It added, “Meanwhile, our Carmichael Road west circuit developed an unrelated problem affecting customers in the western area of Carmichael along with Faith Avenue and a portion of Cowpen Road.

“An emergency team is working on the restoration of that circuit now. Both teams estimate restoration time within the hour. Thanks again for your patience.”

BPL Chairman Dr. Donovan Moxey said yesterday, that while New Providence’s generation issues have been restored, BPL is planning to secure funding to solve the company’s transmission and distribution issues through its rate reduction bond.

“When we talked about BPL’s power issues, it related to two things,” he said.

“It related to generation and it related to transmission and distribution.

“And where we made our initial investment is in generation because lack of generation can impact the entire island, as you would have witnessed from load shedding. 

“And our next investments need to be made in transmission and distribution.”

He added, “We have been making maintenance and repairs and, in some cases, certain upgrades to our T&D network. But clearly, with additional investment, we can make significant upgrades in our T&D network, so that we can minimize these outages. So, this is just how we’re pursuing the second step in a two-step process.

“So, we know…generation is taken care of.

“Now, it’s just a matter of transmission and distribution, but the investment is required to really do a significant upgrade to our transmission and distribution network.”

Moxey said that once that funding is available, it could be another two years before the necessary upgrades are complete. 

“It takes quite a while,” he said.

There are certain components that you can just swap out, but there are certain systems that literally take a year, a year and a half to replace or upgrade. So, you’re looking at probably somewhere between a year-and-a-half to two-year process to completely upgrade our T&D network in New Providence.”

He added, “But then it happens over time.

“…You’re essentially progressively hitting milestones all the way through. “

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Rachel Scott

Rachel joined The Nassau Guardian in January 2019. Rachel covers national issues. Education: University of Virginia in Charlottesville, BA in Foreign Affairs and Spanish

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