Backup generation will be in place to reduce the impact of Top Energy’s nine-hour outage scheduled for Sunday 18 November, for maintenance on the main Kaitaia line.

Generators have been set up in Kaitaia that will supply power to over 2000 customers in central Kaitaia, and generators at Taipa will supply over 4000 customers in Taipa, Mangonui and Oruru.

Without diesel generation, 10,000 customers would be without power – this year 4850 customers will be impacted.

Combined the two generation sources will supply 6.2MW of backup power.

However, Top Energy Chief Executive Russell Shaw says that it is absolutely essential that people in these areas limit their power use to avoid overloading the generators.

Otherwise, he says, if generation capacity is exceeded, power will be lost.

He asks that people delay high energy tasks such as using washing machines and air conditioning.

“Remember also to fill your petrol tank before the outage as pumps and EFTPOS won’t work.” Also store some water if you rely on electricity to pump your water.

More information on the outage will be posted on Top Energy’s website Outage Centre and people can also down load the Top Energy Outage App from itunes or Google Play Store.

If any customer is reliant on electricity for medical support equipment, they should contact their medical provers for advice.

“We are very pleased we can limit the scale of this major outage and reduce the impact on our customers.

“These days, because we can no longer do live line work on our network, generators provide the only viable alternative.”

Mr Shaw says the use of backup generation is part of the company’s strategy to boost the reliability of the local power supply while longer term initiatives such as the Ngawha expansion come on stream.

The Kaitaia generators are a key component of this strategy and will be used to secure supply to Top Energy’s northern network supplying 10,000 customers, until the second 110kV line into Kaitaia is built.

The use of diesel generators introduces a degree of flexibility into how the network is managed with the priority to reduce the impact on local customers.

Over the summer two 1MW diesel generators will be installed at Omanaia to supply 1,600 customers on the south west side of the Hokianga while the substation and 33kV line are upgraded.

Once this project is finished the generators will be relocated to the Kaitaia generator park.

For more information contact:

Philippa White, 021 2418740


Top Energy, which is owned by the people of the Far North, is committed to providing a reliable and resilient electricity network which keeps abreast of evolving technologies such as localised generation, solar power, and microgrids.

Over the last decade its $260 million investment programme has involved substantial improvements to the network which now has an asset value of $250 million – up from $128 million when the programme started in 2009.  This investment programme will continue. Over the next decade we will invest another $170 million to ensure our customers continue to receive a high quality and secure supply of power