The Antigua Public Utilities Authority is seeking to assure customers that the company is ready for the 2018 hurricane season.
In a press release dated September 11, APUA states that its Electricity Business Unit has been conducting frequent line maintenance and Utility Vegetation Management throughout the year; and it says an adequate stock of restoration supplies is in storage in the event of infrastructural damages.
According to the release, the Water Business Unit is currently filling storage tanks to ensure potable water is available for distribution post storm. APUA adds that the desalination plants may be taken offline due to the effects of sea swells for up to 48 hours following a storm.
It further notes, “The Telecommunications Business Unit is finalising the process of securing network cables and refuelling generators at cell sites in the event of a possible power loss. We would like to encourage customers to unplug sensitive devices such as modems and PABX equipment.
Customers are reminded of the following and to adhere to safety procedures before, during and after a storm: ensure that a qualified electrician correctly installs a transfer switch to isolate your generator from APUA power; ensure your generator is in a well ventilated area; do not interfere with electrical wires; always treat downed power lines as energised and dangerous; customers are encouraged not to remove and/or severe downed telephone lines; switch off and unplug sensitive electronic appliances such as televisions, modems, cable boxes, microwave ovens and computers; charge your mobile devices and power banks; keep a battery operated AM/FM radio for updates throughout and after the storm; ensure that enough potable water is stored to sustain a household for at least seven days.
“Antigua Public Utilities Authority remains committed in ensuring that the safety of our employees, general public of Antigua and Barbuda and equipment are our paramount priority,” the company also said. The electricity network will be closely monitored during a storm and based on the severity of the storm and or/loss of extensive load “we may be forced to completely close the entire network to protect lives and equipment.”
After a storm our Restoration Plan will be immediately implemented upon the advice of the Met Office,” APUA concluded.