Topics:  blackout, essential energy, tweed flood 2013

Big guns brought out in fight against power blackout

Tracey Joynson

TWEED residents are still without power due to this week's wild weather.

Essential Energy workers have restored supply to nearly 3000 customers today between Lismore and Tweed Heads, using helicopters, boats and all-terrain lightweight four-wheel drive vehicles to gain access to damaged powerlines, poles and equipment.

But it is likely power will remain off overnight in some of the worst hit areas in the Tweed hinterland at Numinbah, Round Mountain, Boat Harbour and Murwillumbah.

Acting regional general manager North Coast, Daniel Bylsma said crews made significant progress today.

"Gaining access into these areas is our biggest problem," he said.

"Often there are multiple faults on the same line, which we repair and then move on to the next one.

"There is no faster way to do this work and the safety of our crews and customers is paramount.

"We are progressively restoring power to all areas and have also made good inroads repairing damaged low voltage service lines to individual premises, most of which were brought down by trees, flying debris and high winds.

"In most areas we are now mopping up.

"If anyone is still without power or experiencing any supply problems, they should contact Essential Energy on 13 20 80.

"In the coming days we will use helicopters to patrol our high voltage network to check for faults that may have been missed, but it is also possible individual homes or buildings may have suffered damage that we're not aware of, or that won't become apparent immediately."



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