People who have stocked the fridge or freezer for Christmas may need to make plans to save their stash, with planned power outages coming up.
Residents in the Tamworth and Gunnedah areas have been notified, or will be, of outages of up to seven-and-a-half hours in the 10 days leading up to the holiday.
About 670 customers will be affected, including those in parts of East Tamworth, Coledale, Curlewis and Werris Creek.
Acting northern region manager Jim Burdett said there was “never an ideal time for a planned power outage” but Essential Energy had to meet its obligations to public safety and power supply reliability.
“Essential Energy prioritises and schedules regular network maintenance and, if necessary, associated planned power outages, on a daily basis throughout the year with consideration for community events and holidays,” Mr Burdett said.
“Maintenance work on the electricity network is only postponed in exceptional circumstances as it can result in failure of minor equipment components without warning, which can cause flow on major equipment damage and lengthy unplanned power outages for customers.
“While there is never an ideal time for a planned power outage, it’s better to have a scheduled power outage – for which customers can plan – than an unplanned power outage that can potentially cause lengthier disruptions to large numbers of customers because maintenance work was not completed.”
Essential Energy is required by law to give customers at least four business days’ notice of planned outages.
However, Mr Burdett said it aimed to let them know at least 15 days beforehand, by SMS where the customer’s mobile number is known.
“Where possible, Essential Energy is working now to avoid maintenance and upgrade work requiring a planned power outage in the busy festive and New Year period from Saturday, 22 December 2018 to Sunday, 6 January 2019.”
Some of the planned outages in the 10 days before Christmas include:
- Parts of East Tamworth north-east of Anzac Park: December 16, 8.30am to 4pm, 195 customers (network growth)
- Parts of Curlewis west of the school: December 18, 9am to noon, 49 customers (pole replacement)
- Werris Creek north of the school, December 19, 9am to 3pm, 61 customers (general network maintenance)
- Parts of Coledale around Northview St: December 19, 9am to 4pm, 256 customers (general network maintenance)
- South of Goolhi, December 19, 9am to 3pm, 5 customers (general network maintenance)
- Parts of East Tamworth around Murray St: December 20, 9am to 3pm, 93 customers (general network maintenance)
- West of Lake Keepit State Park, December 20, 9am to 3pm, 15 customers (general network maintenance)
To keep abreast of current and future planned and unplanned outages, visit: essentialenergy.com.au/outages-and-faults/power-outages