17 Dec 2016

Power to be shut off again in Gisborne for repairs

8:50 pm on 17 December 2016

Gisborne retailers will have to shut their doors again, just a week before Christmas, when power is cut to the region for eight hours tomorrow.

The power is back on in Gisborne - and most business are re-opening this morning.

Gisborne businesses will need to deal with further power cuts tomorrow. Photo: RNZ / Michael Cropp

Eastland Network is planning to cut power from 6am until 2pm tomorrow, while it completes its repairs to electricity lines near Hangaroa.

Thousands of residents lost power for two days at the start of the week, when a topdressing plane crashed into high-voltage lines feeding the region, killing the two men on board.

Power was restored on Tuesday, but further repairs are planned for tomorrow.

About 20 people will work on finishing repairs to the high voltage lines near Hangaroa which were brought down by the fatal plane crash.

Eastland general manager Brent Stewart said he hoped the work could be completed more quickly than scheduled.

"We're always hoping for that, but we estimate at this time it will be eight hours, but certainly obviously if we get through it quicker, we will restore supply as soon as we can."

Mr Stewart said customers should treat lines as if they were live.

Gisborne Chamber of Commerce spokesman Brent Mitchell said the power cut will undoubtedly have an impact on Christmas trading, but it was essential the lines were repaired.

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