Electricity restoration complete: E.P.C. chief
Recovery works from the Electric Power Corporation (E.P.C.) to restore electricity supply to affected areas in the islands has been completed, says General Manager, Tologata Tile Tuimaleali’ifano.
The island of Upolu and some villages of Savai’I experienced power outage during the weekend following heavy rains and strong winds from Tropical Cyclone Tino.
According to Tologata, an update on the recovery works from staff who have been working round the clock since Saturday indicates the power returning to normal.
He said works in the affected areas of Savai’i was done on Monday while restoring power in Upolu took up to four days including Tuesday.
“We had a meeting yesterday [Monday] and the major works were done at Sauano [Fagaloa] area where there was landslide that damaged power line,” said Tologata.
“Other major works was in Aufaga which has been restored and Mt. Fiamoe causing poor television and telephone reception for others.
“Also we have restored Tuaefu, replacement of new transformer at Vailoa and works at tree house in Sium…recovery works is done and power is back to normal.”
The General Manager was also asked about concerns over fallen trees and a contractor that was employed by E.P.C. to clear the trees to ensure electricity is not disrupted to households.
In response, Tologata said the E.P.C. normal operation has improved since the partnership with the private contractor with fewer disruption caused by fallen trees.
“Before when we didn’t have the contract we had power outage most of the time,” he said.
“But that has changed and the reason why power has been reliable lately is because of the work from the contractor.”
The General Manager said the corporation works collaboratively with the former redundant employees that established the company to identify critical areas affected by trees.
He added the organisation will be on a patrol again to identify electric poles who are likely to be affected by trees.
“The power lines that were affected this time was from trees that are distant from the power lines,” he said.
“But there were works to clear a lot of trees that were near the power lines…”
Tologata could not give the cost paid by E.P.C. to the company for its two years contract work stating he needs to reconfirm such information.
Attempts to get a comment from the TTT Tree Cutting company were unsuccessful.