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WAPA Completes Hurricane Omar Restoration Work To All Feeders

(Monday, November 03, 2008)

The Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority substantially completed full restoration to all electrical feeders damaged by Hurricane Omar when it energized feeder #2 serving east end St. Croix on Sunday morning, announced Hugo V. Hodge, Jr., Executive Director (CEO). According to Hodge, restoration is at 99% of the daily customer load on the generating system. Line crews will continue this week to connect customers to the system who can certify that their weather heads have been properly repaired by a licensed electrician or who may have other minor service problems.

Crews have begun phase two of the restoration process referred to as “permanent maintenance” during which they will straighten leaning poles, replace poles or hardware where necessary, and complete other tasks that will reinforce the system as much as possible against future damage. Crews will also repair streetlights

Hodge said that he could not be prouder of the effort made by WAPA’s linemen during the 18 days of restoration during which crews worked non-stop to restore power to all customers and especially to St. Croix customers who were hardest hit. “We were able to do it with all local crews from all three islands working together to meet our goal,” Hodge said.

Linemen were assisted in the field by employees re-assigned from other departments including meter readers and meter servicemen, water distribution personnel, and engineers. Restoration efforts were also supported by the power plant personnel, emergency call center staff and the line dispatchers, and personnel from various departments including warehouse and garage, internal audit and revenue assurance, finance, corporate services, and customer service. “We also truly appreciate the response of the residents who showed us great support and patience during the last two weeks,” Hodge said.

Because customer calls have greatly decreased as the power has been restored to most customers, WAPA will discontinue its Hurricane Call Center number, 713-9272, as of Tuesday at 8 p.m. Customers with emergencies can still call the regular emergency number at 773-0150 or 773-2250 and then press #7 for the line department. Water emergencies can be reported to 773-3775 between 7:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. After hours and on weekends and holidays, water emergencies can be reported to 773-0150.