Keeping your electricity network safe and reliable

We’re working on a significant project to replace some of the wires on our network.

In the 1950s and 1960s, a lot of development occurred to electrify the Tasman area. Power authorities of the time built about 1200km of new high voltage power lines to bring electricity to many people who had never had it before.

Sixty or so years later, it’s time to replace some of these wires in order to keep our network safe. The ones we are replacing are made from light-gauge copper, which, like anything, can wear out over time – mostly through a process called annealing that can cause them to become brittle.

Replacing wires is a difficult job that involves the use of heavy machinery and crews of line workers spread over multiple work sites. This makes it unsafe to do the work at night time. It also involves working on long spans of line, which means large numbers of people may be affected and more than one planned temporary power outage may be required to complete each job.

Unfortunately some consumers will have their power interrupted more often than they are used to while we replace the wires.  Sometimes we will be able to use one of our large generators to keep the power on but most of the time this won’t be possible because of the way the network is built.

Shutdown notices will be mailed to the electricity account owners of affected properties in the same way we do for all of our planned outages.

The wire replacement work will be spread over the next ten years in pockets located throughout most of our network area and it will take place alongside our normal routine maintenance programme.

While the work will cause some inconvenience, it will keep the network in good condition so that a safe and reliable electricity supply continues to be available for all consumers in the Network Tasman region.