McGrath Shocked At Fourth Electricity Failure In Down Area

Colin McGrath MLA Says Down Electric Issues Must Be Addressed.

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Colin McGrath MLA Says Down Electric Issues Must Be Addressed.

South Down SDLP MLA Colin McGrath said that issues with electric in the wider Down and Mourne area must be addressed following four power cuts in three weeks, two of which were in one day.

South Down MLA Colin McGrath.

Commenting on the outages, the South Down MLA said: “We have been experiencing power cut over a period of for three weeks in a row for around one hour each time, during business hours and impacting about 9000 homes and 30,000 customers including commercial properties.

“People were quite understanding the first and second times, but were getting frustrated by the third time. For the second time on Wednesday this week and in a more concentrated area around Downpatrick, a swan apparently flew into the line and caused a second outage.

“As a result of Covid many people are isolating at home, working from home, or are restricting their movements. This leads to frustration with people facing periods of time at home without electric.

“There has been an associated problem with the 4G network crashing on some networks too, meaning people do not have access to mobile data either.

A swan flying into an electric cable is thought to have caused the electricity outage.

“While it may be a sad indictment that we become so ‘powerless’ during ‘power-cuts’, it is a facet of 21st century life and many people are having too many interruptions to their bushiness day.

“I have written to the Economy Minister to ask her to speak with the Power Regulator to get answers and hope there will be no more interruptions to this much needed 21st century commodity,” added Mr McGrath.