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Powerful help on the way to Central Queensland

Published: 22 Feb 2015 1:40pm

Ergon Energy crews from the Far North have joined the massive response effort to restore power in Central Queensland in the aftermath of Tropical Cyclone Marcia.

Forty one field staff from Cairns, Mareeba, Atherton and Tully are at Mackay waiting to move into the Rockhampton/Yeppoon areas while another eight will leave Cairns on Monday. (February 23)

Customer Delivery Manager Herbert Mark Biffanti said crews are being staged at Mackay and will gradually be moved into various communities to restore the network and power to businesses and residents.

"They join an already large contingent of Ergon field staff and contractors from across regional Queensland and we expect to have about 800 people working on the ground to restore power to impacted communities.

"Our immediate priorities have been life-threatening situations such as fallen power lines and restoring power to key community infrastructure to help the communities get back on their feet as quickly as possible," he said.

Crews have already restored power to some local hospitals, nursing homes, shopping centres and water treatment facilities.

"However there is much to do as the damage to our network from vegetation and debris is extensive with over 1800 powerlines brought down. This means that many customers whose power has been interrupted will not be restored for days.

"Based on past experience, it could take more than week if not longer to restore all customers given the extensive damage to our network especially in the Yeppoon area which bore the initial brunt of Marcia's cyclonic winds," he said.

Mr Biffanti said Far North crews have extensive experience in power restoration work following cyclones and it is great they can return the favour and help get the power back on in Central Queensland.

Media Contact: John Fowler
Phone: 07 44328730 or 0417283713

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