Emergency crews from Barbados Light & Power (BL&P) have been “tracking and moving through stormy conditions” responding to several reports of outages and broken power lines across the island.
Manager of Communications and Government Relations Jackie Marshall-Clarke told Barbados TODAY the company had received several reports of outages as the country felt the effects of the weather system, which later strengthened to become Tropical Storm Matthew.
“Many of them we were able to rectify and to restore . . . but of course safety is our first priority and we will only be working in these conditions if it is safe to do so,” Marshall-Clarke said.
She explained that as the country headed into “the dark hours” the power company’s main focus was on customers in St Andrew served by the Mile-and-a-Quarter feeder – including Zion Hill, Apes Hill and Water Hall – and customers fed by the Providence feeder, which includes all areas below the Grantley Adams International Airport, Chancery Lane, Eden Park and Wilcox Hill.
“It is our hope that we would have those customers restored within a short time,” she explained.
“I want to let our general public know our priority right now would be major feeders covering large groups of customers . . . and of course we are monitoring all of this and assessing the risk to our employees working in these storm conditions,” the BL&P spokesman added.
The island’s electricity provider said while there were several reports, the damage had not been severe.
“At this time most of the faults are weather- related . . . we have had some broken, shackled transformers, blown fuses, tree branches falling on power lines . . . have been the major [electrical] causes.
“[We] had a report of a line sparking fire but nothing critical at this moment . . . . But we have been responding to the calls and taking in the information. We can’t respond immediately [to every situation] under the circumstances but [they are noted] and once the conditions improve we certainly will respond to others.”
Earlier in the day BL&P rectified a number of faults on the south coast, successfully reinstating a feeder there, while restoring power to a number of other areas, including Garrison, Harts Gap, Dayrells Road and Hastings.