Categorized | National News

Weather Hinders BPL’s Restoration

After facing heavy criticism throughout the week in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew, officials at Bahamas Power and Light Company Limited (BPL) said they expect complete power restoration by the end of the week, despite challenges from inclement weather.
In a press statement, the electrical company said that some of the holdup is due to buildings that have been submerged in water that have to be declared “water free “ to ensure that adequate provisions are made for person’s safety and property and for the protection of electrical equipment.
Despite this inconvenience, BPL said they have restored supply to more than 80 percent of its residential customers in the capital.
BPL said its crews in conjunction with local contractors, CARILEC teams, and PowerSecure teams have substantially ramped up the pace of restoration in New Providence.
However, company officials said as they move closer to full restoration, they expect progress to be a bit slower as they estimate that more than 5,000 customers in New Providence either have individual supply issues or supply issues affecting a few area streets.
BPL said that starting this week, it will be aggressively targeting these types of supply problems.
In the meantime, despite the weather, crews have been making significant progress in some the hardest hit areas of the island.
BPL has started to restore supply to its customers in the southern districts of the island where Hurricane Matthew caused significant flooding, namely in the Hanna Road and Marshall Road areas.
As for the Family Islands, BPL said they have completed restoration in all islands except North and Central Andros and Great Harbour Cay.
Officials said Great Harbour Cay’s restoration is at 97 per cent while in North and Central Andros the restoration is at 55 percent and 50 percent respectively.
Over the weekend, Prime Minister Perry Christie on a local radio said he had spoken to BPL officials and asked them to “speed up the process” and added that he is sometimes impatient with the rate of the restoration process.
He added that the power restoration is vital for the literal and figurative re-energizing of New Providence.
Last week, former Bahamas Electricity Corporation (BEC) Chairman Leslie Miller yesterday criticized BPL and said the electricity provider has failed to properly coordinate efforts in a timely manner to restore the supply to residents in New Providence, pointing to the use of a “skeleton crew” to address the large number of residents in New Providence.
Mr. Miller added that BPL should have been able to reconnect customers in about two to three days after Hurricane Matthew’s passing.

However, some residents in New Providence have been left without power for about a week.

He attributed this lengthy and “unacceptable” time period to BPL’s decision to move away from the model to remedy issues caused by hurricanes, which was adopted by the BEC before it transitioned to BPL.

Residents have also made their frustrations known, flocking to both social media and local talk shows to voice their displeasure in the restoration efforts.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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