Wednesday, May 28, 2008

BEL Identifies Cause of Nationwide Power Outages

Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) has confirmed that nationwide power outages which occurred earlier this morning were the result of a fault on the 115 kV transmission line.

At 7:41 a.m. today, power supply was lost to the National Grid following a trip on the system. The Company identified that the fault on the system was located in the Orange

Walk District and surveillance crews were immediately dispatched via helicopter and road to determine the cause. Using local generation sources, BEL was able to restore power to the entire country by 8:22 a.m.

Power supply was again lost to the National Grid at 9:30 a.m. Shortly after, surveillance crews reported that the cause of the trip was a damaged insulator located on the 115 kV transmission line, approximately two miles outside of Orange Walk Town. Investigations have revealed that the damage was most likely due to the recent extended dry and dusty weather conditions.

Power was restored to Belize City, Ladyville, the Western and Southern Zones by 10:45 a.m. using local generation sources, while power supply to the Orange Walk and Corozal Districts was restored shortly after using Mexico’s supply. Power supply to San Pedro was restored at 11:46 a.m. Crews are currently working to repair the damaged equipment as soon as possible.

The Company also reports that power supply was lost to the Corozal District at 1:46 a.m. and was restored at 8:58 a.m., following repairs to a damaged insulator on the 34.5 kV line. BEL regrets any inconvenience caused by these outages. For more information, please contact BEL at 0-800-BEL-CARE or 0-800-235-2273.

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