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Power issue

Hasmukh Patel, Chief Executive Officer, Fea
Wednesday, February 28, 2018

We refer to an article titled "Power issue" published in The Fiji Times on Tuesday, February 27, 2108.

Power outages on our electricity network are caused by a number of factors such as:

i) Planned power shutdowns for planned maintenance. These are advertised in the local dailies.

ii) Unplanned power outages resulting from the following:

• Lightning;

• Trees contacting powerlines;

• Birds shorting overhead powerlines;

• Vandalism — people throwing foreign objects on to powerlines, piling rubbish on top of electrical pillar boxes and setting them alight, cutting trees which then fall on to powerlines, etc;

• Third party digging into underground power cables;

• Equipment failure because of ageing and fair wear and tear;

• Illegal high loads tangling with overhead powerlines;

• Vehicle accidents with our power poles;

• Illegal overloading of electrical circuits by customers;

• Electrical faults on customer installation; and

• Inclement weather.

Planned outages are executed to ensure maintenance is carried out in a timely manner in order to minimise breakdowns which in turn would result in unplanned outages.

Members of the public can assist FEA to maintain power supply in the following ways:

• Keep your trees trimmed and well away from the powerlines. It is best not to plant trees near powerlines. Report any trees that are touching, or are in close proximity to the powerlines.

• Please drive carefully so that you do not drive into powerpoles and other power assets.

• Call FEA before you dig to verify the presence or absence of underground power cables.

Recent power outages in Savusavu have been attributed to planned maintenance, vegetation contacting FEA powerlines, lightning and equipment failure because of fair wear and tear.

While FEA does its utmost to carry out timely maintenance in order to prevent equipment failure, it is impossible to completely eliminate them.

The FEA sincerely apologises for the inconvenience caused to our valued customers.

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