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Not another blackout, Minister!

Not another blackout, Minister!

Energy Minister David Parker must explain why New Zealand today experienced its third major blackout in as many months, says National Party Energy spokesman Nick Smith.

“It is simply not acceptable that 120,000 people in Nelson, Marlborough, North Canterbury and Buller are without power tonight, following a blackout at 4.35 this afternoon due to the failure of all three circuits north of Christchurch.

“The explanation that it was caused by Transfield maintenance staff at Islington shows things are seriously amiss in Transpower’s maintenance systems.”

The failure in Auckland, affecting 800,000 people in June, was attributed to inadequate inspection and maintenance of wires at Otahuhu.

Dr Smith says today’s blackout shows Transpower’s maintenance systems are not working.

“The costs of this blackout will run into the millions. Fish, timber and fruit processing are completely disrupted by this sort of outage, as well as the obvious inconvenience to homes and small businesses.

“The repeated major failures make our infrastructure look Third World. It is time for Mr Parker to admit Labour’s electricity reforms are failing.”


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