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Turner: Blackout not good enough

Wednesday 21 June 2006

Turner: Blackout not good enough

United Future and Bay of Plenty-based MP Judy Turner has slammed the fragility of the electricity system after 6000 households in Te Puke and Pongakawa were left without power last night.

A surge in power use about 5.30pm threatened to overload transmission lines, which were unable to meet demand. Local lines company Powerco made the decision to cut electricity feeds to the region for three hours to prevent a potentially bigger power crash.

"As far as I am concerned this is an unacceptable situation," said Mrs Turner. "In the middle of winter a lot of Bay of Plenty locals rely solely on electricity to provide heating, hot water and cooking facilities.

"I understand the lines company's decision and do not have an issue with that, I am just frustrated that people in my home province have to suffer the indignity of enforced power cuts.

"I know that the Bay of Plenty winter is not as severe or as cold as what those in the South Island are experiencing, but for the elderly and people with young children a power cut is a dangerous situation.

"It would be a real tragedy if a person died as the result of a similar overloading or preventative measure," concluded Mrs Turner.

ENDS

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