Unison’s Hawke’s Bay power network affected by grid emergency
Unison’s Hawke’s Bay customers are experiencing widespread outages which may extend for days or weeks following a Transpower grid emergency.
As of first light this morning approximately 19,000 customers in Hawke’s Bay had been affected by power outages with 16,000 customers still without power as a result of Cyclone Gabrielle
Shortly thereafter Transpower declared a grid emergency as rising floodwaters in Napier resulted in a loss supply to communities in Hawke’s Bay and Gisborne. Transpower and Unison are working together to restore power to as many customers as possible using a contingency supply from the south.
Transpower is advising that customers should be prepared to be without power for days to weeks, rather than hours. Meanwhile Unison is working to repair damage to its network so it is ready to connect customers once Transpower have restored supply to the region.
Unison’s Relationship Manager Danny Gough says, “Unison has been working with Transpower to understand the severity of the issue and estimated restoration times.”
“Transpower is acutely aware of the impact these outages are having on our customers but struggling to obtain communications from the Redclyffe substation, which is a sign that it is likely underwater.”
“We understand this news will not be welcomed, but I want to assure our customers that Unison is working closely the Transpower team to understand the situation further and develop a restoration plan. We will do all that we can to support Transpower in their efforts to restore power to our customers as quickly as possible,” says Mr Gough.
All options are being considered, but the safety of work crews and the community is paramount. We will not take actions to bring power back before it is safe for them to do so.
Transpower will update people through their website and social media channels as the situation becomes clearer.
- For real time information about outages across Unison’s network or to report an outage, customers should in the first instance visit www.unison.co.nz/outages . Unison is currently experiencing high call volumes and wait times so encourages customers to only phone 0800 2 UNISON (0800 286 476) in an emergency, or dial 111.
During power outages, Unison regularly advises the following safety precautions:
- Check for fallen or damaged electricity lines and treat lines as live at all times. Never touch wires or lines lying on the ground, hanging from poles, or objects such as tree branches that may be touching them. Fallen lines or wires may still be carrying an electrical current and could shock, injure or even kill if touched. Unison is urging anyone who sees a power line down to call 0800 2 Unison.
- Turn off the power at the main switch if you suspect any electrical damage in your home. If the power goes out, turn off all electrical appliances to prevent possible damage by a power surge when the electricity supply is restored.
- Remember that if the electricity network is damaged, it might take some time to get reconnected, so make sure you have a battery operated radio, a torch, spare batteries, and a full gas bottle for your BBQ as part of your emergency kit.
- Medically dependant customers are advised to prepare for the likelihood of no power and make alternative arrangements in advance.