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Northside of St. Thomas Fully Restored Following Outage Caused by Vehicular Accident, WAPA Says

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The V.I. Water and Power Authority said Saturday afternoon that electrical service was restored to all customers in the Hull Bay area Saturday afternoon several hours after a sports utility vehicle careened into two utility poles on the northside of St. Thomas. Initially more than 3,500 customers on Feeder 7A were affected, however, that number was reduced once electric system personnel isolated the accident scene.

For several hours Saturday, more than 500 customers experienced an electrical service interruption as WAPA personnel planted a new utility pole, installed a pole-mounted transformer, as well as primary and secondary service lines and other electrical equipment, WAPA said. The accident toppled one pole, snapped another and destroyed an array of electrical equipment.

Interim Executive Director Noel Hodge implored motorists to exercise caution when driving on the roadways of the territory and avoid making contact with the utility’s equipment.

“Today’s accident not only inconvenienced a number of area residents from Hull Bay to Lerkunlund, Misgunst, and Barrett Hill in terms of electrical service, it also caused a service interruption to cable television, telephone and internet services to residents of the area,” he said.

Hodge said motorists were also adversely affected as the two-lane road was closed to thru traffic while work was underway. “While we understand accidents occur, there is a need for motorists to exercise good judgement while operating motor vehicles on the territory’s roadways.” Residents can ill afford lengthy electric service outages and the Authority should not be made to absorb the loss of revenue from such outages coupled with the manpower and replacement equipment costs.

The outage began at 6:38 a.m. today and service was restored to all customers at approximately 3:15 p.m.

On St. Croix, WAPA said customers on Feeders 4A and 10A experienced a couple of service interruptions Saturday morning. Crews found overgrown foliage on primary service lines near the Five Corners intersection which caused an electrical fault and tripped the feeder. Crews cleared the lines and replaced a defective lightning arrestor before restoring service to all customers at 11:32 a.m.

Hodge thanked the public for its patience while crews worked to restore service in both an efficient and safe manner. He also expressed his gratitude to all WAPA personnel who responded to the accident earlier today and those in the Electric System who worked tirelessly to restore service to all customers in both districts.

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