HAWAII ISLAND – Parts of Hawaii Island were without power for short periods Saturday night, as the Hawaii Electric Light Company issued a last minute plea to customers asking them to conserve power.
The utility said the outages are occurring across the Big Island due to the unavailability of three major generators: Hawai‘i Electric Light’s CT4 and CT5 at its Keahole power plant, and Hamakua Energy Partners’ steam turbine unit.
“In addition, wind resources are presently at zero,” HELCO said a media release.
The power utility is managing to chronicle the affected locations in a steady stream of tweets, which include confirmation of outages in parts of Hilo, Kona and Kea’au.
HELCO issued a media alert at 5:30 p.m. this evening asking Hawaii Island customers to conserve electricity use this evening, “especially between 6:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.”
“As a precaution, to ensure sufficient power is available to meet the early evening peak demand for electricity, Hawai‘i Electric Light is asking all customers to conserve energy,” wrote HELCO. “The time between 6:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. is especially critical when customer usage normally climbs due to early evening cooking, bathing and other activities.”
HELCO suggested customers turn off or lessen use of air conditioners, delay hot showers and dishwashing activities, delay oven and dryer use, and minimize cooking until later in the evening.
HELCO said half-hour power outages may be implemented around the island to maintain system stability this evening, as crews work to repair the two Keahole combustion turbine units.
“We understand the evening hours are an especially inconvenient time to cut back on electricity. We appreciate everyone’s understanding and cooperation,” said Rhea Lee-Moku, Hawai‘i Electric Light spokeswoman.