NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Residents of eastern New Providence were left powerless for the third time in less than 48 hours, as Bahamas Power and Light (BPL) were challenged to complete repairs on a damaged line in the area.
The latest outage occurred around 8pm, impacting residents on Abundant Life Road, Glendale Subdivision, Old Trail Road, Soldier Road, St Michael Road, Gleniston Gardens, Sea Breeze and Joe Farrington Road, were impacted.
The power company assured a team was on site and it expected the issue to be resolved within an hour.
Reports of broken overhead power lines on Faith Avenue, south of Cowpen Road, around 7.20 pm prompted BPL to send a maintenance team to the site.
In a statement shortly after 8pm, BPL said power had been restored to the area.
Residents in the surrounding area on the Winton Substation were without power for much of Tuesday.
Around 3.20pm on Monday, one of two power lines servicing the substation tripped, leaving consumers in darkness.
BPL’s maintenance teams were mobilized to identify and repair the problem.
“The teams worked continuously between the wee hours of Monday morning and the broiling sun of Tuesday afternoon to address the problem and ensure that the second line could be returned to service as soon as possible,” BPL Public Relations Director Quincy Parker said.
“The teams discovered a damaged lightning arrestor and cable termination at Prince Charles near the shopping plaza. The lightning arrestor was replaced and the cable termination was repaired.”
Upon completion of the works Tuesday afternoon, another outage occurred.
Customers of Yamacraw Hill Road were again impacted, though BPL said the outage lasted fewer than 10 minutes — between 4:51 pm and 4:58pm.
According to the power provider, as of 5pm “issues impacting this line had been resolved”.
The intermittent outages prompted fears among some residents the another summer would be marred by prolonged blackouts in sweltering conditions.
Some residents took to Facebook to express their frustration.
Jeff Hood said: Why Treasure Cove; out east again? Three times in four days. Just call this the load shedding exercise that it is.”
Darren Curry almost bemoaned the situation.
“From last week Friday, [you] were doing repairs all hours of the day and night,” he said.
“In the Yamacraw area really — because we, the residents, have been experiencing frequent outages and a notice only comes out after [your] call center gets flooded. BPL gets a fat ‘F’ for services during Hurricane Dorian. The power in Yamacraw didn’t go out as much, so what’s your lousy excuse now.”
Curry also questioned whether the issue was related to generation capacity, and if the government got bad value for its investment in new generators at Clifton Pier.
Last year, residents across the New Providence endured months of prolonged outages due to load shedding exercise — the result of a general shortfall on New Providence.
BPL has since installed seven new Wartsila engines at its Clifton Pier Power Station A power plant, and added an additional engine to its Blue Hills Power Station.
In March, BPL Chairman Dr Donovan Moxey said the power provider was more than prepared to handle the increased demand on the grid as a result the curfews and lockdown related to the COVID-19 pandemic.