Following the recent power outages affecting the Hollesley area, Therese raised the issue with UK Power Networks and asked them to investigate. This is their response:
"Following a review of power cuts in the area, I can confirm that the majority have occurred as a result of autoreclosers operating on our overhead cables. These form part of our safety equipment and will automatically turn the power off if an intermittent fault is detected along the network. This type of fault can be caused by windborne debris, animals, lightning or trees interfering with overhead cables. Once the problem has cleared, the power is automatically switched back on, an operation that usually only takes under one minute, however, I understand the inconvenience they can cause.
To mitigate this type of fault we have a robust maintenance programme across all the areas we own and operate, which includes line patrols and tree trimming. Due to the issues highlighted in the area, we have completed additional line patrols to ensure there are no outstanding problems with the overhead network. In 2018 we completed three line patrols of network in the Hollesley area; in March we installed bird diverters on our overhead lines as a bird had caused damage to a section of the network, the other two patrols did not identify any areas of concern. We have a further line patrol being undertaken in the next seven days and we are organising for a helicopter patrol that will enable our team to quickly review a large portion of our network in the area.
On 7 January, we were aware of a power cut affecting 276 customers in the area. On investigation, our engineers found a damaged piece of equipment on the overhead network and were quickly able replace it allowing swift restoration of power in the area. During this time your constituents may have experienced low voltage. The majority of properties were restored within one hour with the remaining restored within two hours. We have found no further faults on the network, however, our local team are monitoring the network to identify and repair any fault should they occur. We work hard to keep electricity supplies as reliable as possible."
To report power outages call 0800 3163105 or via
Parliament: House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA,
Call: 0207 219 7164
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