(BIVN) – After strong winds knocked the power out for about 14,000 Hawai‘i Electric Light customers on Tuesday, only about 100 were in the dark as of Wednesday afternoon.
The customers still without power were primarily in Puna; in the Ainaloa, Hawaiian Beaches, Hawaiian Paradise Park, Nanawale, and Orchidland subdivisions, HELCO says. For some, service can be restored only after the customer makes repairs to damaged equipment on their residence such as a broken service attachment, weatherhead or meter equipment, utility officials say.
“Our crews have been working through the night to safely restore service as quickly as possible, and we will continue to work until service is restored to all customers impacted by the wind storm,” said Rhea Lee-Moku, Hawaiʻi Electric Light spokesperson. “We apologize for the disruption and sincerely thank our customers for their patience and understanding. We recommend that anyone who still is experiencing a power outage report it to our dispatch office at 969-6666.
“Safety is our top priority,” Lee-Moku said. “As restoration efforts continue, we want to be sure the community stays safe.”
The Wind Advisory has expired for al parts of the island, with the exception of the summit areas. Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa could still see northwest winds at 25 to 45 mph with localized gusts over 60 mph, forecasters say.
HELCo offers these further tips for the community:
- Treat downed power lines as energized and dangerous.
- Stay at least 30 feet away from downed power lines, as they can be dangerous if electricity continues to run through them. If you see someone injured by a downed power line, do not approach them and call 9-1-1 for assistance.
- Do not handle or move any fallen or damaged utility equipment.
- Be aware of trees weakened by winds that have the potential to fall.
In homes and businesses, HELCO advises:
- Operate generators outdoors and away from flammable materials. Generators connected directly to your home may feed electricity back to power lines, creating a safety hazard for the public and our crews. Plug appliances directly into the generator with extension cords.
- Unplug unnecessary and sensitive electronic equipment. Use high-quality surge suppressors for electric appliances that remain plugged in.
- Use battery-powered flashlights and lanterns instead of candles or other flammable fuel sources which are fire hazards.
- Relocate anyone dependent on electric-powered life support medical equipment to an alternate location. Take medical equipment and medications with you and stay in contact with your medical equipment supplier for any special equipment needs.