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Operator error caused blackout

Bahamas Power and Light headquarters.

Bahamas Power and Light headquarters.

By EARYEL BOWLEG

ebowleg@tribunemedia.net

RESIDENTS throughout New Providence were left angry yesterday after an island-wide blackout. With many people working from home and students completing classes and exams online, the blackout left thousands of people frustrated.

Bahamas Power and Light said the power went off shortly after 1pm.

“We are investigating the matter now, and will keep customers updated as we get information. We anticipate two hours’ restoration time from the onset of restoration efforts,” the company said 40 minutes after the blackout occurred.

About an hour later, another release indicated power was restored at 2pm in a few areas including Wellington St, Hospital Lane, Laird St, Fleming St and Solomon’s Mines. Later in the day, BPL said areas such as Fire Trail Close, Mckinney Dr, Sunset Park (north & south of Carmichael Rd), Carmichael Meadows, and Jubilee Gardens had power. Other areas came back online later in the day.

The fault was traced to a sub station on Skyline Drive and The Tribune understands was caused by an operator switching error.

Bahamas Union of Teachers President Belinda told The Tribune virtual classrooms will be impacted if BPL cannot keep the lights on in the coming days and weeks.

“If BPL is unable to keep the electricity on that will be a major challenge,” she said, adding it was not the only issue affecting students learning from home.

“We anticipate not only the electricity cutting off but we also speak about the students who do not have electricity and then the other challenge too is the strength of the internet board. The weakness of that.”

Ms Wilson estimated many hours of class time would be lost if the power cuts were to continue while schools are closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. She said this could delay students completing the syllabus as prescribed for the school year.

On Monday, BPL blamed bad weather for power outages in New Providence’s on Mother’s Day.

A statement sent by BPL’s Director of Communications Quincy Parker said: “Over the past 24 hours, inclement weather interrupted electricity services in a number of places across the island of New Providence, including the east.

“In addition to lightning strikes, teams were mobilised to restore supplies in the wake of such issues including a downed high-voltage power line.

“Although power has been restored to all feeders at this time, we are still dealing with a few isolated issues that require attention. We thank our customers as always for their patience.”

Back in April, lightning strikes on the company’s overhead system caused outages in areas including Nassau East, Star Estates, McKinney Drive and Carmichael Road.

END

Comments

DWW 4 years, 2 months ago

not report on the outage in Marsh Harbour yet? we still waiting 9 and a half months later.

Dawes 4 years, 2 months ago

They can say whatever they want. it doesn't matter. We will still have to pay huge amounts for crappy service. And at some point also the additional for the bond reduction. Of course no one at the company will be held accountable. I normally say they are useless. But it is us the people who are as we have allowed ourselves to be walked all over.

DDK 4 years, 2 months ago

The BEC organization is worse than useless and has been for decades, like its master The Bahamas Government. Hiding behind an operational name change only worsened the service. You are quite right Dawes, shame on We The People for continuing to accept this worthless entity!

sheeprunner12 4 years, 2 months ago

Depends on which island you live on ……… some BPL staffers are more committed, vigilant, and caring than others ……. All depends on the local leadership and expertise...............Just saying

DDK 4 years, 2 months ago

Sheeprunner, if there are actually islands with reliable service, more POWER to them! Maybe it's time to relocate. They are indeed fortunate to be removed from the general corruption and ineptitude. The corporation itself is deplorable...

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