On April 10, 2020, Hydro One will be completing work to improve reliability of the electricity system to the City of Port Colborne. This essential work will energize a second source of power to customers of Canadian Niagara Power Inc. ("CNPI") in Port Colborne. The outage will commence between 6:30 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. and is expected to last for six (6) hours.
Approximately 1,900 customers will be affected. The approximate location that will be without power for the duration of the outage is the area to the west of Holloway Bay Road, south of Netherby Road, east of Elizabeth Street, including a small section of Durham Street and north of Lake Erie.
Here are some answers to frequently asked questions regarding this project:
What are the benefits of this project for the long term?
We know businesses and residents in Port Colborne have expressed concern about reliability issues over the last several years. A planned outage is required to allow for essential work to help improve reliability to the Port Colborne area by enabling a second source of power and making critical upgrades, which include replacing equipment that has reached its service life.
There is currently a high likelihood that the Port Colborne area would experience prolonged outages in the near future in the event of certain situations, such as a storm. It is critical that this project moves forward in a timely manner to avoid this risk.
During these unprecedented times when we know residents are spending more time at home with their families, including working from home, we understand the elevated need for reliable power. We will make every effort to restore power as soon as possible.
Why was the outage planned during the daytime?
The health and safety of the employees performing the work is paramount. This outage was not scheduled to be overnight to ensure safe conditions for crews performing the work. We are starting as early as possible to avoid as much disruption as possible to our customers, critical services and major commercial and industrial large employers in the area.
Why was Good Friday chosen as the date for the planned outage?
We know that there is never a good day or time for an outage. Hydro One, CNPI, and the City of Port Colborne agreed to complete this work on Good Friday for several reasons.
Completing the work on this date allowed us to significantly minimize the number of residents that would be impacted by the outage. By choosing this day, when electricity load is lower, CNPI is able to shift the power load, resulting in approximately 1,900 customers impacted rather than 9,380 customers, which is the entire City of Port Colborne. We understand this is a difficult time for an outage as many customers are at home during this time and will work to restore power as quickly as possible.
During any outage, please be mindful of these safety measures:
· Ensure all appliances are in the off position, stoves etc.
· Unplug all appliances that were in use before the outage.
· Take precautions if using candles.
· If using a generator, be mindful of where it is located in your home to ensure proper ventilation because of carbon monoxide.
How can I make sure the food in my refrigerator is safe during the outage?
· Consider turning down your refrigerator settings to its coldest setting the night before to ensure the refrigerator is at its coldest temperature at the onset of the outage.
· Add bags of ice or ice packages around dairy and meat products to keep them cold while the refrigerator is off, or consider putting perishable food like milk, cheese etc. into the freezer.
· Try not to open the refrigerator door. Consider placing drinks or snacks required during the outage in a cooler with ice to limit having to open the refrigerator door.
What do I do about my water supply?
For those residents whose water supply is impacted by a power outage:
· Consider filling jugs of water for drinking/cooking water for your household for use during the planned outage.
· Worried about flushing your toilet? Before the outage, consider filling your bathtub with water and have a bucket near by to fill the toilet tank with water to be able to flush.