Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Power failure highlights grid's fragility

Nick Smith National Party Energy Spokesman

12 June 2006

Power failure highlights grid's fragility

Provenco corp hurries together a generator solution.. just as the lights turn back on.Today's massive power failure in Auckland and Hamilton shows just how fragile New Zealand's transmission system has become, says National's Energy spokesman Nick Smith.

"Storms and accidents will inevitably knock down lines but the system should be designed and maintained to always have an alternative circuit available.

"Overhead earthwires brought down by the weather caused Auckland to grind to a halt today. That's not good enough.

"Consulting engineer Bryan Leyland has blamed a lack of investment in the grid for the problem, and pointed out Auckland's vulnerability.

"Engineers have been warning the Government for years that the level of investment in transmission has not been sufficient to keep up with growth, particularly in the upper North Island.

"Meridian Energy chief executive Keith Turner said in February last year that 'New Zealand's electricity grid is so overworked that some lines cannot be taken out of action for servicing. That is unheard of in the Western developed world.'

"The cost of this electricity failure will amount to tens of millions of dollars for the Auckland economy - as well as the human cost of delayed medical operations, lost schooling and personal inconvenience," says Dr Smith.

"This is a warning shot that Auckland's electricity infrastructure is nearly as bad as its roads.

"Can the Energy Minister reassure the public of Auckland that this won't happen again?

"The system should be able to cope with a storm of this sort and National will be following the issue up with more questions about not only went wrong, but why there were no backup systems in place."



  • ACT New Zealand - What Use Is The Minister Of Auckland Issues?
  • New Zealand Police - SH 1 Open: temporary speed of 50km/hr
  • Manukau City Council - Services and facilities affected by power cuts
  • Chch City Council - ChCh weather update VIII
  • Transpower - Ak Power Outage Update Early Afternoon 12.06.06
  • Hanmer Springs - Winter snow-fall blankets Hanmer Springs
  • Chch City Council - ChCh weather update VII
  • Employers and Manufacturers - Failure exposes fragile power grid; costs $50m+
  • Police - Traffic lights back on in Auckland
  • Transpower - : Auckland Power Outage Update
  • Auckland Health Boards - Power outage Auckland City and Middlemore hospital
  • Auckland Health Boards - Auckland Hospitals close due to power outage
  • Police - Emergency Management Plan Activated
  • Police - Auckland: Controlled Intersections
  • Chch City Council - Christchurch Roads
  • ChCh City Council - Weather Update Number 4 - CCC
  • Police - Mid and South Canterbury: Weather/Road conditions
  • Police - Mid and South Canterbury: General Road Conditions
  • Police - Auckland: Power Outage
  • Police - State Highways 7/7A: Treacherous Road Conditions
  • Police - Care Required: SH 4, between Wanganui and Raetihi
  • Police - South Island: Snow
  • Police - Auckland: Adverse Traffic/Road Conditions
  • David McLellan - Scoop Images: Canty Students Celebrate Snow Day
  • Craig Faulkner - Reader Images: Christchurch Airport Snow
  • Craig Neilson - Auckland Power Outage and Weather
  • Lawrence Allen - Rolleston Snow
  • Scoop Link - Flickr Search: "snow christchurch"
  • © Scoop Media

    Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

    Gordon Campbell: On The Tax Working Group’s Road Map

    Trying to analyse the interim report on the Tax Working Group (TWG) is like trying to review an entire All Blacks game, but at the half- time mark.

    With so much still to be finalised, Sir Michael Cullen and his colleagues are going to need all the All Blacks’ fabled finishing skills to get a coherent, fiscally neutral package together by the February 2019 deadline. More>>


    Meth Testing Report: Housing NZ "To Right Wrong"

    Phil Twyford “Housing NZ acknowledges that around 800 tenants suffered by either losing their tenancies, losing their possessions, being suspended from the public housing waiting list, negative effects on their credit ratings or, in the worst cases, being made homeless.” More>>


    No Reshuffle: Meka Whaitiri Removed As A Minister

    Meka Whaitiri will be removed as a Minister with immediate effect... The decision was made after receiving a report into an incident that occurred on 27 August in Gisborne, involving Meka Whaitiri and one of her staff. More>>


    Pay Equity Bill: Making History For Women’s Pay

    The Equal Pay Amendment Bill, introduced to the House today, will make it easier for workers to make a pay equity claim , using a more simple and accessible process within New Zealand’s existing bargaining framework. More>>


    Suffrage 125: NZ A Trailblazer For Women

    “We acknowledge the work of Kate Sheppard, Meri Te Tai Mangakāhia, and all of the suffragists who tirelessly campaigned for the vote… Today we also need to ask each other: how we can continue to make our country a fairer and better place to continue the legacy of the suffragists.” More>>


    Asylum: Refugee Quota Increasing To 1500

    “The quota increase will take place from July 2020. In the meantime, we will work to increase the number and spread of refugee resettlement and support services. We need to make sure we’re prepared for this change in policy.” More>>





    InfoPages News Channels