Over 1,100 customers still without power

| 20/08/2021 | 25 Comments
Cayman News Service
CUC linesmen working through the night (photo courtesy of CUC)

(CNS): CUC was still battling around thirty separate isolated outages all over Grand Cayman Friday morning, particularly in East End, one of the most impacted communities from Tropical Storm Grace, where nearly all customers are still without power. On Thursday night the government reopened the William Allen McLaughlin Civic Centre in the district to help people in need of shelter, as many residents, including the elderly and vulnerable, were still without power.

According to the latest numbers from CUC, over 500 homes in West Bay are still impacted. Last night CUC said that while it had managed to reconnect the majority of its 31,000 customers, those still without power whose properties are not badly damaged could expect to have the power restored by midnight Friday.

“As is expected in the aftermath of a tropical storm, such as what we witnessed [Wednesday], we are also experiencing critical safety emergencies, such as downed and active power lines in areas that have already been restored and are also responding to these calls on a priority basis,” a spokesperson for CUC stated.

According to reports from East End, some newer fiberglass poles, designed to withstand much higher winds than the older wooden poles, were downed by the storm, but a lot of the problems are trees that have pulled down lines.

Speaking on Cayman Marl Road’s social media live vlog Friday morning Sacha Tibbetts, VP Customer Service and Technology at CUC, explained that one tree on the line can cause significant problems for power supply. But he also stated that CUC will be reviewing how well the poles fared during the storm.

CUC urged people whose property requires repairs, such as a damaged weatherhead, to contact a licensed electrician and not to attempt repairs themselves as such equipment could cause electrocution. Everyone is also warned to stay away from downed powerlines and to exercise caution on the roads.

Please check restoration times on the CUC Outage map on the website. Updates will also be posted on social
media platforms. Call the Outage hotline at 945-1282 or 911 to report downed power lines or any electrical safety issues.


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Category: Business, utilities

Comments (25)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    CUC burns loads of diesel. It is a crime against humanity. All that CO2.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Are they the unvaccinated ones??

  3. Anonymous says:

    Why can’t lines be put underground when making the repairs? Or any upgrades for that matter!

    • Anonymous says:

      Haven;t we been through that before? You should know that would cost CUC money.

      • Anonymous says:

        More like we the customers might very well end up covering the cost for the next 25 years. The Water Authority has replaced all the lines in George Town up to Bodden Town in the last 20 years. Would it not have been great if the two collaborated to put a proper services pipeline in the same trench?
        Trouble is CUC, Flow, NRA & Water Authority would rather cut their own throats rather than plan and work together. NRA puts a road down and WAC/Flow dig it up to put in their services. This is anti productive and customers get the short end in the process. Again where’s the National development plan that mandates utilities work together not against each other? SMH

      • Anonymous says:

        Will cost CUC absolutely $ 000000

        We, the customers, pay for all capital upgrades

        So, absolutely NO, we have not been through that before!

    • An says:

      Every one bitchs About CUC . For the most part we have reliable power. Why fight the system . BUY SHARES IN CUC . NOT A BAD RETURN ON YOUR MONEY

  4. Anonymous says:

    It wasn’t even a proper hurricane. They charge so much for electricity and then this. Why on earth?

  5. Sideshow Bob says:

    Works for me!

  6. Anonymous says:

    Trees my a$$. Always excuses.

    They should consult Bermuda Belco to see how in 24 hours after Cat 3-4 hurricanes they manage to restore electricity to the entire island.

    • Anonymous says:

      This is a good excuse to get rid of all trees that may negatively affect power lines and property. We don’t need them anyway. Plant plastic ones instead.

      Sarcasm of course for those who think I’m serious but this might be a CIG policy going forward as they like artificial instead of nature.🙄

    • Anonymous says:

      Most of their distribution system is underground if I’m not mistaken. That makes the world of difference. Unfortunately Cayman can’t compare☹️

      • Anonymous says:

        About half is underground in Bermuda.

        Putting this all underground in Cayman might cost up to a billion dollars and take 8 to 10 years, and wouldnt be feasible in some places.

        The main pro is that it makes the distribution system not susceptible to wind damage.

        The main cons are the substantial cost of putting the equipment and transmission lines (and the conduit that has to be built around it) underground on a retrofitted basis, and the periodic costs and complexity of addressing faults and other issues, which would require digging up the wires and equipment rather than simply pulling a truck up to a power pole.

        • Common Sense says:

          Up to a billion dollars? Nonsense, unless they would earn over $500 million in profits for their capital improvements.

          You wouldnt bury all the power lines.

          Start with the power lines along the main roads so the basic infrastructure is secure and mandate underground electrical for all new construction projects over $5 million in value.

        • Anonymous says:

          I agree. And any underground vaults become susceptible to collecting saltwater in the case of overland flooding which can be problematic. Not saying it can’t be done, just different issues arise.

          Another positive would be the ability to place finer optics in the trench at the same time, requiring broader trenches, however CUC and the Telecoms could share the expense proportionately.

          No small undertaking for certain, but could provide a next generation foundation for utility services.

          • Anonymous says:

            HDPE vaults fusion welded to HDPE cable conduits. It’s not rocket science but costs $$$$$$

      • Anonymous says:

        If your so pro Bermuda why don’t you go live there? You’ll be back here within a year.

    • Anonymous says:

      Completely fake news. As you can see from this story from Bermuda in 2014, Tropical Storm Fay “….Lingering and widespread blackouts since Tropical Storm Fay 18 days ago have ….”.

      If trees damage power lines or if power poles snap, power is not getting back up in 24 hours. After Ivan we brought in hundreds of outside workers and equipment, and it took several months in some places on the island.

      https://www.royalgazette.com/other/news/article/20141031/burying-power-lines-would-cost-375-million/

    • Anonymous says:

      24 hours?

      No they didn’t

      https://bernews.com/2020/09/belco-hurricanes-paulette-teddy-restoration/

      See “related stories” at the above link

    • Vigilante says:

      Bermuda BELCO works hard to restore power, just like Cayman CUC. Lots of men and lots of trucks do the job in both place. Not much underground in Bermuda actually, except for Hamilton and Fairylands. The difference is that BELCO will come each June and cut back any trees or branches anywhere near the lines. Also BELCO lines are closer to the ground and on sturdier poles that are closer together than Cayman. That means that for a Cat 1 there is very little outage, but for Cat 3 the damage might be the same as what Cayman just experienced…

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