NL Hydro says rolling blackouts are possible over the next three days
Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro is asking individuals and businesses on the island of Newfoundland, connected to the island’s main grid, to cut back on their power use over the next three days.
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In a notice issued shortly after 2:30 p.m., the power-producing utility and Crown corporation stated it is expecting a “very high demand” for power bringing the island close to the peak amount of energy available on the system.
“As a precautionary measure, Hydro is requesting that customers on the island take steps to conserve electricity where possible,” the notice states.
“Hydro has 1,575 megawatts of generation available on its system, and peak loads over the next three days are expected to be between approximately 1,400 megawatts and 1,500 megawatts. Therefore, Hydro is putting its generation contingency plan in place to respond to the unlikely event that Hydro experiences further issues with its generation, it may be difficult to meet peak demand.”
The request to cut back power usage is a familiar refrain to customers that experienced a run of rolling blackouts and unplanned outages in early January. The investigations into those outages are not yet complete.
In this case, according to Hydro, the warning is being issued as a precaution and given 145 megawatts of power is currently not available to the system.
Hydro’s request for a reduction in energy use is being echoed by Newfoundland Power.
“If conservation efforts are not sufficient, Newfoundland Power will be required to implement rotating power outages if a shortage in power supply from Hydro exists,” states a release from that utility.
Hydro and Newfoundland Power are asking customers to avoid unnecessary electricity use and reduce consumption from 7-10:00 a.m. and from 4-8:00 p.m. through March 6.
From Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro:
Residential customers can assist by doing the following:
1. Reducing electric heat by a few degrees
2. Conserving hot water by not running dishwashers, washers and showers
3. Avoid using clothes dryers
Business customers can assist by doing the following:
1. Only heat spaces when and where necessary ‐ reduce temperatures or shut off heating in vestibules, stairwells, lobbies and unused spaces.
2. Reduce equipment use during peak periods
3. Reduce lighting ‐ turn off outdoor safety and security lighting at the start of each day and turn off non‐essential indoor lights, outdoor signs, billboards and other lighting.
More to come.