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Underground power cables take too long – Vanterpool

Electrical wires hang on Main Street in Road Town.

With power already restored to some buildings in Road Town thanks to underground cables, residents are now calling on Government to do away with overhead power lines.

Works Minister, Mark Vanterpool, said while he is prepared to answer the call, territory-wide underground electricity will have to wait.

“We are working in tandem to look at an underground system in the near future. However, if we try to do that now to get power back to many homes, it will take too long. So, we’re going to rebuild the system as it was out of the central area, and then we have been looking at a plan to take the underground lines further out to be able to be more resilient to this type of weather.”

The territory has been grappling with a widespread power outage following Hurricane Irma which damaged most utility poles.

Vanterpool said it will take roughly six months to restore power to most of the territory, adding that new poles and wires have been ordered for the effort.

In the meantime, underground infrastructure is used to power business and the commercial districts such as Wickham’s Cay on Tortola.

“We have been able to get the banks back up quickly because of that. The hospital is back up on the underground line [as well],” Vanterpool said.

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