20 Aug 2008

Lae in PNG hit with power blackouts

3:39 pm on 20 August 2008

Papua New Guinea's second largest city, Lae, is being hit with power blackouts after the breakdown of two power generators led to the rationed supply of electricity to the city.

The power crisis is expected to last up to three weeks, as work is done to repair the broken generators.

The President of the Chamber of Commerce in Lae, Alan McLay, says businesses have had to use their own generators as electricity supplies from the Hydro System to Lae have been cut off.

Mr McLay says backup generators can only produce about half the power needed at peak time.

He says some homes have run out of water because pumps working the city's main water supply have been cut off.