Pole fires cause multiple power outages in parts of Nauru

The Nauru Utility Corporation (NUC) has been the past few weeks attending to and repairing pole fires that have caused a number of power outages in the communities of Ijuw, Anibare and other areas.

According to Nauru Utility’s CEO Carmine Piantedosi, there have been nine power poles cross arm failures reported since late November 2020 due to pole fires causing interruptions to the corporation’s 11KV feeder.

Nauru Media News - NTV reports this is due to sea salt accumulating on the cross arm’s insulators and with a bit of dampness causes the conductors to flash over and interrupt the power supply.

The generation plants are fine however the environment is causing a few problems with the corporation’s poles and wires.

NUC has been doing insulator washing and changing insulators as well as cleaning the site where the sections have been isolated because of the fault; but keeping up with the power outages is difficult due to the current environment.

Recent heavy rain has provided relief for NUC with a lot of insulators being washed, while the corporation is also arranging a program to do insulator washing to catch the issue before it happens. The pole fires are happening mostly at nights because there is high humidity at nights rather than during the day when it’s hot and sunny.

NUC is finding the problem areas fairly quickly because customers are good at reporting the pole fires to Fire & Rescue with NUC called out to address the problems which are attended to and power restored within an hour to an hour and a half.

After sectionalizing and repairing the problem area NUC will go on further while the power is still off to wash other insulators to reduce the risk of further power interruptions.

Mr. Piantedosi apologized to the public for the inconvenience caused when the power goes off and also thanked them for quickly alerting NUC of the problems.



Photo supplied Nauru Media News- NTV