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Ergon restoration plan well underway

Published: 28 Mar 2017 4:44pm

Ergon Energy will begin assessing damage to its network as part of its restoration plan in the areas hit by Tropical Cyclone Debbie within the next few days.

Customer Delivery Manager Mark Biffanti said restoration crews can’t be sent to the impacted areas around Bowen, The Whitsundays and Mackay until it was safe to do so.

“The first step to restoring power is to assess our network for damage and make repairs. Our assessment teams have been briefed and are preparing to deploy, but Tropical Cyclone Debbie has been an unusual event in terms of its sheer size and slow-moving nature,” Mr Biffanti said.

“We also have to consider any access issues there might be because of debris and flooding.”

“As soon as we get advice that it’s safe to move our pre-positioned crews at staging posts in Townsville and Rockhampton they will be on the road.”

Around 900 field staff are available for restoration in the response zone.

“About 500 field staff have been prepositioned from Townville and the north and approximately 400 are also located in the Rockhampton area ready with trucks and equipment to move in when it is safe to do so.”

“This is a joint effort – we have about 200 Energex field staff from Brisbane who are now ready to roll out from Townsville alongside Ergo Energy crews,” he said.

“We understand and appreciate people will be anxious about being without power for extended periods but we ask them to be patient and understand that we can’t put our crew in harm’s way.

“To support the restoration teams we also have large generators available across the state to help get power back on to our customers.”

“This includes Pegasus units that can be set up in a fixed location with the option to inject into our where there is no damage.

“We have units in Bowen, Townsville and Mackay and other large generation units prepositioned in Home Hill, Proserpine, Ayr and Bowen.”

Ergon Energy also reminds people they should stay inside until the danger of Tropical Cyclone Debbie has passed and keep well away from fallen powerlines and treat them as “live”.

At this time, people should only contact Ergon Energy to report potential life-threatening emergencies (eg: lines down or other network danger) by calling 000 or 13 16 70.

Media Contact: Brett Judge
Phone: 0439 971 765