Energex program heats up

ENERGEX is midway through a record $573 million investment to prepare its south-east Queensland electricity network – which includes Gympie – for the upcoming summer season.

Community safety messages highlighting the need to prepare for severe weather in the weeks and months ahead will also be rolled out by Energex this week and continue into 2011.

Almost $22 million is being invested every week until the end of the year as crews and contractors upgrade substations, transformers, powerlines and underground cables in readiness for what the region’s sub-tropical summer will deliver.

About $100 million of the cash will go towards the Gympie region’s power needs, an Energex spokesperson said yesterday.

The work will also assist the Energex network meet a continued surge in energy usage experienced in south-east Queensland over the past few years due to increasing population and a rapid uptake of power intensive lifestyle products such as air-conditioners and large screen televisions.

The summer season will see an increased number of Energex field and technical staff on standby ready to respond at a moment’s notice.

Increased standby rosters commence on September 30 and will run through to the end of March, boosting the number of on-road rapid response teams in the field, customer service representatives in the call centre, network operation technicians and a range of support staff ready to respond in a bid to maintain safe and reliable electricity supplies across the region.

They will be supported by a fleet of mobile generators designed to be dispatched and connected as quickly as possible to minimise power disruptions during severe weather.

Following the success of a new remote response trial last year, Energex will expand the ability of customer contact staff to answer calls from home during the early stages of major incidents, greatly enhancing public communications.

Gympie Times

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