By SANCHESKA BROWN
Tribune Staff Reporter
THE Bahamas Electricity Corporation once again blamed lightning strikes for widespread power outages in New Providence over the weekend.
BEC Executive Chairman Leslie Miller told The Tribune that several arrestors and transformers were hit by lightning during one of two lightning storms on Saturday and Sunday.
As a result, several areas in eastern, southern and northern New Providence experienced outages, he said.
Mr Miller said the corporation expected full power restoration by the end of yesterday.
“Power went out in the eastern area around 6:30am (Sunday) and was off for several hours. The outage affected mainly Fox Hill, Bernard Road, those areas south of Prince Charles Drive – all of that was out as well as certain portions of Winton.
Lightning hit some of the arresters and that caused a problem. It was a pretty rough lightning storm and it knocked out the transformers in Winton and messed them up pretty badly,” he said.
“But the technicians went out right away and were able to get some of those areas back on line in a few hours, the others are expected to be back by the end of the day (Sunday).”
Some BEC customers took to the social media website Facebook to complain about intermittent power outages which began on Saturday.
“BEC – pure garbage – if Bahamians had a choice on electrical power supply that company wouldn’t exist. Nine hours of no current last night (Saturday),” one user wrote yesterday. Mr Miller also said the corporation is still deciding whether or not to purchase six new generators.
He said a decision on the matter “should be made by the middle of this week.”
Last Thursday Mr Miller said BEC is expected to purchase five or six new generators in the coming weeks for about $6 million.
Mr Miller told The Tribune the team of BEC experts that travelled to Florida to view the generators returned with “great news”.
He said the plan to purchase the new generators is in direct response to the continuous blackouts and power outages in New Providence and throughout the Family Islands over the past few months – and preparation for mega resort Baha Mar being added to the grid.