BPL working with authorities to issue load-shedding schedule

BPL released load shedding schedule to general public this afternoon amid widespread public outcry for improved communication about outages.

Load shedding persists in NP

NASSAU, BAHAMAS – With no end in sight to the persistent load shedding that has plagued Bahamas Power and Light (BPL) customers in New Providence over the last few weeks, it could be several more days before the power company releases a load shedding schedule to better prepare residents for the hours-long outages that have adversely disrupted families and commerce.

When contacted yesterday, BPL Director of Communications Quincy Parker said, “We are working on a protocol with the police”.

While he did not expound, Parker indicated that a schedule would not likely be available “until next week”.

It remains unclear how long BPL expects to load shed.

The Aggreko rental generators, which were expected to shore up BPL’s generation capacity, have yet to be fully installed.

As previously reported, 14 megawatts of rental units were installed recently and were providing additional power to the grid.

Load shedding has persisted, however, up to last night much to the frustration of consumers.

In a statement yesterday, BPL said, “BPL control has confirmed the need to load shed today.

“We apologize for the inconvenience and discomfort this will cause, but load shedding will be done in two-hour rotations.

“BPL commits to proactive communication as we work together to end the need to load shed in The Bahamas.

“Again, we apologize and are working to restore BPL to a position to provide safe, reliable and affordable power as soon as possible.”

In a follow-up statement, the power company said, “Customers near BAF Financial and Church of God are now offline, as are customers in Marathon and Easy Bay areas. Rotation in two hours.”

Another 10 to 15 megawatts of generation is expected to be installed.

BPL Chairman Donovan Moxey had announced that 25 megawatts, which will cost the company approximately $450,000 per month to rent, would be installed over a week ago.

As it relates to the schedule, which many customers have demanded, Parker said last week that the company hoped to release its load shedding schedule by late next week, adding that the chairman and the commissioner of police had a conversation about the idea of releasing one.

BPL had refused to issue a schedule, as it was concerned criminal activity would increase in affected areas. However, authorities have said there is no evidence to support that.

Despite widespread outrage from residents and businesses, many of whom have labeled BPL as unacceptable and in crisis mode, Moxey has maintained that the power provider is not in crisis.

There was an island-wide black on July 2.

Minister of Public Works Desmond Bannister said that was the result of a heavy-duty truck colliding with a lamp pole in the Coral Harbour area that damaged the 132,000-volt cable.