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Hawaiian Electric to continue priority grid upgrades, some requiring customer outages
Essential work necessary to replace, strengthen equipment
Release Date: 9/22/2020
HONOLULU, Sept. 22, 2020 – Even with Oahu under a stay-at-home order, Hawaiian Electric continues to complete high-priority resilience projects such as replacing damaged utility poles – work that occasionally requires a customer outage.
Because Hawaiian Electric provides an essential service, the company continues to perform needed grid reliability work on Oahu, even during stay-at-home orders.
Customers should pay close attention to outage notifications from Hawaiian Electric. Notices may come by mail, email or phone call to affected customers at least a week before the work takes place, unless there is an emergency situation. With many customers working or learning from home, these notices provide information such as the expected duration of the outage.
It is also important for customers to let Hawaiian Electric know if their contact information has changed to ensure the company is able to properly alert them about a scheduled outage.
To prepare for a scheduled outage, customers should:
- Turn off and unplug sensitive electronic equipment such as televisions and computers to avoid damage in case of a surge when power is restored
- Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible during the outage to maintain proper food temperatures
- Plan ahead for meals since your stove and microwave may not be available
- Be aware that on-street parking and street access may be affected as crews work in the area
- Have a backup plan if anyone in your household works from home, participates in distance learning or uses medical equipment
Since the beginning of hurricane season, Hawaiian Electric ramped up infrastructure upgrades to ensure public safety and system reliability across Oahu, Maui County and Hawaii Island. In the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, Hawaiian Electric delayed certain resilience and maintenance projects to minimize customer outages needed to complete the work.
Crews need to continue performing essential work that includes vegetation management, substation maintenance, and replacing aging and damaged overhead and underground equipment. Hundreds of poles and transformers must be replaced through the end of 2020 with higher-priority jobs scheduled first.
Hawaiian Electric 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.