A massive power outage taking in much of the north coast yesterday afternoon was not related to storms that swept the region on Sunday.
The towns of Lismore, Bangalow, Byron Bay, Brunswick Heads and Mullumbimby were blacked out for around half an hour yesterday afternoon following a Transgrid ‘control room issue’.
Even traffic lights in some towns were affected by the blackout.
The outage came even as Essential Energy linesmen scrambled to reconnect hundreds of homes and businesses affected by fallen powerlines during Sunday’s storm.
And at one stage Essential’s electricity fault reporting line was so busy that it was automatically hanging up on callers without giving any details about the cause of the blackout.
But a Transgrid spokesperson was at pains to point out that yesterday’s mass outage wasn’t related to the storms.
The spokesperson said the blackout affected around 66,000 customers.
‘We were able to identify the issue quite quickly and able to bring it back within the hour,’ he told Echonetdaily.
‘It was a switching issue, a system issue at our end, which we’re investigating further,’ he added.
‘We move electricity to a large substation in Lismore and that powers the substations in each local town. It’s quite rare for that to happen.
‘The result of our fault means the power we supplied to Essential was knocked out,’ he said.
The spokesperson said that Transgrid was ‘confident that the fault won’t recur’.