(BIVN) – The Hawaiʻi Electric Light Company restored service to customers along the Hāmākua Coast today, five days after a fallen tree damaged transmission lines in Hakalau.
There was a partial lane closure on Highway 19 south of Hakalau Bridge, police reported, as HELCO crews worked to repair the transmission lines.
HLECO shared this media release Wednesday afternoon:
Hawai‘i Electric Light crews completed repairs to transmission lines and equipment damaged by a fallen tree in Hakalau.
About 3,000 customers along the Hāmākua Coast between Papaikou and Honoka‘a experienced several power outages starting on Friday, Aug. 16, when a large tree fell on a transmission line near the Hakalau Bridge. Crews worked to remove the tree and repair the damaged line. However, subsequent outages occurred on Saturday, Tuesday and today.
Power was rerouted while personnel worked to isolate and identify the causes. The outage on Saturday likely was caused by equipment at the Pepe‘ekeo Switching Station. Tuesday’s outage remains under investigation. Today, crews repaired transmission lines that were sagging due to damaged equipment on the pole.
The transmission lines that serve the Hāmākua Coast are located along forested areas and embankments. They also span several bridges including the Hakalau Bridge which spans 600-700 feet across. This hindered troubleshooting efforts and required crews to climb poles in areas that were inaccessible to vehicles.
Hawai‘i Electric Light sincerely apologizes for the inconvenience these outages have caused the community. The company is conducting additional aerial line inspections to identify and resolve potential issues on the transmission lines that may lead to power interruptions.
Outage notifications are posted on the company’s Twitter account @HIElectricLight with the hashtag #BigIslandOutage. To report a power outage or downed lines, please call the company’s Trouble Desk at (808) 969-6666.