NIE restores power after Storm Ali

Many roads were closed across Northern Ireland due to fallen trees. Pic by Pacemaker.
Many roads were closed across Northern Ireland due to fallen trees. Pic by Pacemaker.

A staggering 17,200 NIE customers in Dungannon, including Moneymore, were affected following damage caused to the electricity network by Storm Ali on Wednesday, September 19.

NIE Networks emergency crews had to restore power to local homes and businesses following approximately 90 reported faults.

The high winds gusted at speeds of up to 90mph, causing widespread damage with roads blocked by fallen trees and debris. The electricity network suffered severe storm damage with trees brought down across overhead lines, broken poles and windborne debris disrupting electricity supplies across Northern Ireland with the worst hit areas in Mid Ulster and the South East. Around a thousand individual faults were recorded on the network.

NIE Networks had been closely monitoring the weather and was able to put the company’s emergency plan into action early on Wednesday morning, as the high winds were forecast to sweep across the country from 9am. NIE Networks emergency crews, engineers, call handlers and other staff were mobilised to assess any damage and start the repair process.

Rodney Ballentine, Duty Incident Manager at NIE Networks said: “We had been in close contact with the Met Office in the days leading up to Storm Ali, and had mobilised emergency crews, engineers, and call handling staff in preparation for the storm.

“Our local incident centres were escalated from early on Wednesday with NIE Networks engineers and emergency crews able to get on with the restoration work as soon as the high winds died down and it was safe to begin repairs.

“Losing electricity supplies can be an unpleasant and frustrating experience, no more welcome to NIE Networks than to our customers, which is why restoring supplies following weather damage is always a priority for us.”

For more information on how NIE Networks responds to storms and what you should do during a power cut visit nienetworks.co.uk.