EDITOR’S NOTE: On Saturday, some residents in the Munster/Ashton area of Rideau Goulbourn were left without power for hours. We asked Hydro Ottawa about why power went out and why here have been so many outages in the area. Here’s the response from Morgan Barnes, a communications officer with Hydro Ottawa.
While our crews were prepping for a planned outage (scheduled for the evening of Saturday, March 21), our system was in an abnormal state, with customers transferred to a supply from Hydro One. That supply failed when Hydro One experienced a pole fire in nearby Carleton Place – resulting in a loss of supply (and our customers losing power). In an effort to restore our customers, we attempted to transfer customers back to our system, but that failed – causing one of our circuits to lose power. As a result, the planned work scheduled for March 21 could not go forward as we now had an unexpected outage to deal with.
We are currently evaluating if we will be rescheduling to the already communicated rain date of March 27. We understand that residents have had to deal with reliability issues of late and we want to be sensitive to their frustration and the need to do the work in order to prevent happenings such as this from occurring in the future. This past weekend was the perfect storm of a system made vulnerable due to an already planned outage and an unexpected loss of supply from Hydro One as a result of a pole fire. Restoration efforts were diminished, in part, due to the extreme high and low temperatures on Saturday that turned rain to ice.
We are actively working to bring the reliability in the area to the high standards other customers enjoy. Our crews are continuing their work in the region, including scanning for equipment that needs to be changed.