Hawaiian Electric ramps up resilience work to strengthen island grids as hurricane season starts
Projects delayed by COVID-19 may require customer outages
Release Date: 6/1/2020
HONOLULU, June 1, 2020 – Hawaiian Electric will resume critical resilience projects such as replacing utility poles – work normally done before hurricane season but delayed due to COVID-19 and stay-at-home orders. Customers will be notified if the scheduled work requires outages.
Hurricane season officially starts today, and Hawaiian Electric is ramping up infrastructure upgrades to ensure public safety and system reliability across Oahu, Maui County and Hawaii Island. With customers adhering to pandemic-related stay-at-home orders, Hawaiian Electric delayed certain resilience and maintenance projects to minimize the number of customer outages that are often needed to perform the work.
As the state continues to loosen stay-at-home orders, crews will resume critical work that includes removing temporary overhead jumper lines and replacing aging and damaged utility poles. Hundreds of poles and transformers will be replaced through the end of 2020 with higher-priority jobs scheduled first.
Customers should pay close attention to outage notifications from Hawaiian Electric. Notices are mailed or delivered to affected customers several days before the scheduled work takes place to allow time to make alternative plans. With many customers still working from home or taking online classes, these notices will provide information such as the expected duration of the outage.
Crews continue to follow social distancing guidelines while in the field. The public is asked to refrain from approaching Hawaiian Electric workers while they are on the job. If interaction is necessary, maintain a safe distance of at least six feet.