12 CARILEC Linemen To Arrive On Monday

October 19, 2014

[Updated] Twelve linemen from CARILEC-member utility companies in Barbados, British Virgin Islands and Dominica are due to arrive on the island tomorrow [Oct 20] to assist BELCO with restoration work following Hurricane Gonzalo.

Over 31,000 customers — more than 85% of the customer base — lost power after the island was battered by hurricane force winds for many hours.

Sparks flying in Pembroke during the early hours of the hurricane:

In less than 48 hours BELCO has restored power to close to 20,000 customers, however the company said they anticipate that “remaining work will be labour-intensive and slow going.”

In their latest statement at 12.30pm today [Oct 19] BELCO said there are approximately 12,077 customers without power and 16 circuits out, and the system assessment has turned up nearly 100 poles and 50 transformers that must be replaced.

For all our coverage of Hurricane Gonzalo click here, and for our live blog where we are bringing you continuous live coverage of Hurricane Gonzalo click here.

Update: BELCO said, “CARILEC has indicated that crews will be making their way to Bermuda on commercial flights, rather than on a charter, so will be arriving at various times. We do expect crews from one utility to arrive on Tuesday with others arriving later in the week. Also, there may be some change to the islands that are sending crews.”

The full statement from BELCO is below

At noon Sunday, we want to thank the community for their support as work continues into day 2 after Gonzalo, and day 8 after Fay. In particular we want to thank the 1,500 customers who have been without power since Sunday, October 11, when Tropical Storm Fay struck Bermuda. We also want to thank the many people who have sent messages of thanks and support to our staff.

We expect 12 linemen from CARILEC-member utility companies to arrive tomorrow – they are from Barbados, British Virgin Islands and Dominica.

At this hour, we are reporting approximately 12,077 customers without power and 16 circuits out. The number has increased slightly since last night due to a pole fire that caused Control to take a circuit out. Work to reinstate it is ongoing.

They system assessment thus far has turned up nearly 100 poles and 50 transformers that must be replaced. We are experiencing some pole-mounted transformer failures and pole fires due to damage sustained during both TS Fay and Hurricane Gonzalo.

The breakdown of customers without power by area is:

  • Central: 5338
  • City: 620
  • East: 3088
  • West: 3031

The areas scheduled for work at this hour are listed below. We will continue to update the list with new areas as restoration work progresses. In addition to this major work, we do have crews out working on priority jobs, such as schools, senior citizen homes, essential buildings, etc., and addressing issues such as partial power, which can be damaging to electronic equipment inside homes.

· Back of St. Davids including school
· Floral Lane, Cut Road, Barry Road
· Pockets of singles and branch lines

· Fractious Street Substation (North Shore),
· Harrington Sound, Lollys Well
· Hermitage Road area, Middle Road Devonshire,
· Parsons Lane Substation, Orange Valley
· Pockets of singles and branch lines

· Point Finger Road
· Paget – several branch lines
· Spanish Point
· City of Hamilton

· Dockyard
· Middle Road, Somerset (Scaur Hill)
· Cedar Hill
· Ord Road
· Pockets of singles and branch lines in Southampton, Sandys and Warwick Parishes

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Comments (2)

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  1. Local Yokle says:

    Can priority please be given to people out since LAST Sunday???? I know the answer is no though….

  2. pebblebeach says:

    Everyone knew a Category 3..4 was heading our way, earlier that week BELCO was talking about CARILEC-member utility companies may assist.

    In my opinion, knowing the weather forecast and hurricane models as predicted, BELCO should of had these linemen here in Bermuda before the hurricane arrived.

    It was plainly obvious given our experience that thousands of BELCO customers were going to be without utility services. Here we are Monday a few days after the hurricane and still almost 13,000 customers are still without power and some customers have been without power for over a week from Fay.

    BELCO staff have done a tremendous job thus far and for that I commend them but Executive Management’s inability to secure CARILEC-member utility companies linemen here on the Island before the hurricane reflects poor leadership.