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BC Hydro crews working extremely long hours in storm aftermath

Last Updated Sep 1, 2015 at 11:17 am PDT

(Courtesy Twitter @weathernetwork)

Hydro crews working 16-hour shifts to deal with power outages

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – BC Hydro crews are logging some extremely long shifts trying to restore power to the remaining tens of thousands of people still without power after Saturday’s punishing wind storm.

“We’re maintaining a presence of about 400 folks in the field. We’ve brought in crews from throughout BC to provide coverage from as far away as Smithers and Terrace,” says Hydro’s Simi Heer.

“Our crews are working 16-hour shifts and then they must take breaks. It’s an eight-hour break and then they are back on for another 16 hours,” she tells NEWS 1130. “It is dangerous work — electricity is a dangerous product — and we need to ensure crews are rested and able to keep their focus on safety.”

With the next weather system blowing into Metro Vancouver, BC Hydro crews may get little rest. There have already been a few new power disruptions this morning.

“If the wind does materialize, we do have all hands on deck and we will work those outrages into our restoration plan. Right now it’s fairly slow, tedious, time-consuming work. Crews have hundreds of trouble orders on the go and they simply need to get to those, one at a time,” Heer says.

“We appreciate our customers patience as we work through this and are hoping it doesn’t get any worse today.”

BC Hydro is also warning that you may experience short outages as crews switch circuits to restore power in your area. It could take until the end of the day for some customers to have their power restored.