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Hundreds of homes, lose power: More blackouts expected this summer
Almost 500 properties in Richmond were left without power for six hours yesterday during the peak of the searingly hot day which saw temperatures soar over 43 degrees.
Hawkesbury residents are facing the prospect of further blackouts as extreme heat conditions are forecast to continue over summer with the Bureau of Meteorology confirming El Nino has arrived. The forecasts for the next two weeks shows sustained temperatures into the high 30’s.
Power was interrupted at 2.14 pm and not restored until just after 8 pm last night from West Market Street to Windsor Street, Endeavour Energy told the Hawkesbury Post. At the time of the blackout, the temperature in Richmond was 42.9 degrees. By 3.30 pm it had peaked at 43.2 degrees.
The outage was caused by an underground cable fault in West Market Street and affected 479 properties, according to Endeavour Energy. A spokesman said staff arrived one hour after the outage and undertook “lots” of testing to determine where the fault in the network was. He said the network is built to a 44 degree summer rating, but that a build up of heat over five or six days can affect the network.
Businesses without back-up power were forced to shut for the rest of the day. Coles and Woolworths customers at Richmond were turned away yesterday afternoon as the store was forced to shut. However down the road, Dan Murphy’s remained open for customers as it had back-up generators available.
“Like many homes and local businesses yesterday, Coles Richmond experienced a power outage and as a result the store was closed for a period of time., We thank our customers for their patience and understanding while we worked to restore power,” a Coles spokesperson told the Hawkesbury Post
Coles did not want to go into any detail about its generators but said they had some but that there were limitations on what they could do. The spokesman said that the store continued to fulfill Coles Online orders throughout the power outage. Woolworths did not respond to the Hawkesbury Post’s enquiries.
NSW Ambulance yesterday said there was a 20 per cent increase in calls to Triple Zero compared to a typical Saturday during summer.