Damage to the network from yesterday’s thunderstorm is extensive and Western Power is asking people who are currently impacted by power outages to be patient as crews respond to hundreds of hazards and assess and repair damage across a large area from the Wheatbelt to Perth Hills.
There is also repair work still underway to restore customers impacted by a number of bushfires, and previous storm activity from the past week.
Acting CEO Jacqui Hall said she understood the frustration and inconvenience the current power outage was causing people but assured the community that crews were working as fast as they could within safety precautions.
“The safety of the community and our crews is paramount,” she said.
“The dangerous storm conditions caused multiple faults across a large area of the network, with hundreds of hazards including numerous damaged poles and wires down from the Wheatbelt to the Perth Hills area.
“Around 22,000 homes and businesses power supply remain affected down from 34,000 at the peak.
“We have also been working to repair damage elsewhere on the network with customers impacted by fire and lightning strikes without power from incidents over previous days.
“While we are still scoping the damage, there are more than a hundred poles and hundreds of kilometres of conductor damaged across the network.
“The damage area is massive, with seven transmission lines out of service.
“Western Power crews worked through the night to respond to hundreds of hazards due to the storm, and we have 100 remaining that we are responding to make safe before repairs and restoration can commence.
“All available crews, including regional, have been deployed and we have called contractors in and mobilised helicopter patrols. All planned works have been cancelled where not critical.”
Mrs Hall said she knew unknown current restoration times were frustrating, but at this stage until damage and the repairs required were determined, accurate restoration times could not be provided.
“Our response and repair work are dependent on high fire weather conditions as we as we cannot restore power until it is safe. We’d encourage customers impacted by the outages to consider making alternative arrangements as their duration may be extended.
“To help progress line patrols and assess damage, helicopter patrols started this morning, and our network operations team is continuing to work to safely isolate storm-damaged lines and back-feed to restore power where possible.
“We please ask customers affected to please be patient. We're working as quickly as we can while ensuring safety for the community and crews.
“The thunderstorm, severe heatwave and high-risk fire weather conditions experienced during the past four days has been challenging but please be assured we’re working hard to restore your power.”
If people see any damage to the network, please stay eight metres away and Make The Safe Call to Western Power on the emergency 24/7 number 13 13 51 so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe. Stay up to date by visiting our outage page.