NL Hydro issues “power watch”

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NL Hydro is warning residents that one of the three units at the Holyrood power plant is broken, and a “Power Watch” is in effect.

NL Hydro’s Holyrood generating plant. —Telegram file photo

The government-owned utility isn’t asking people to conserve power yet, but a news release from the company noted that demand for electricity is high right in the mornings and evenings, due to cold weather.

The situation only affects the Avalon Peninsula.

“The electricity system on the Avalon is being monitored closely and Hydro is working with Newfoundland Power to meet customer electricity needs,” the company said in a news release.

“The utilities will advise customers of any changes.”

Other power generating units are online, including the new gas turbine installed at Holyrood.

More to come

Update:

Holyrood unit out of commission until at least Friday

Nalcor vice-president Dawn Dalley said that it likely won't be until Friday before the company knows what exactly is going on with an out-of-commission unit at Holyrood.

The Avalon Peninsula was placed under a precautionary "Power Watch" after one of the three Holyrood generating units had to be taken offline overnight.

Dalley said that the warning indicator is in the boiler of Unit 2, and the boiler gets super hot. It'll be two days before the unit cools down enough that workers can get in and inspect the unit and figure out what the problem is.

Dalley said that the "Power Watch" is therefore likely to continue at least through the rest of the week, although the really critical times are only the peak hours of 7-9 a.m. and 5-7 p.m.

All of this comes almost exactly two years after "#DarkNL" the widespread power outages that rocked the province and preceded the resignation of then-premier Kathy Dunderdale.

Dalley said that under the circumstances, NL Hydro has a bit of a buffer, but they're being super cautious with the whole situation. The use of a "Power Watch" advisory is something that the utility adopted after the 2014 power outages.

Organizations: Newfoundland Power

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  • Errol
    January 06, 2016 - 10:31

    Hydro fully anticipates it will be able to meet winter demand with its current generation supply. However, two additional security measures are in place. First, Hydro secured capacity assistance arrangements with industrial customers to make additional power available if needed. Secondly, Hydro is installing a new 120 MW combustion turbine plant that will provide additional generation reserve for the system. ...NL Hydro, December 18, 2014. So now we begin with a Power Watch. Here we go! Said Jimmy in the Watchtower..."I gotta get outta here".