Kirsty demands answers over Christmas Day power cuts

January 4, 2012 9:26 AM

Brecon and Radnorshire AM Kirsty Williams has demanded answers of the man in charge of providing power to Knighton and the upper Teme valley after the area was plunged into Christmas day darkness. This was the second year running when residents faced Christmas day power cuts.

Kirsty has written to the Chief Executive Officer of Western Power Distribution, who now own Central Networks. In her letter she demands answers about how the company will prevent the situation from rising again.

Kirsty commented, "Many families in Radnorshire have now suffered two consecutive years with power cuts just when they were trying to cook their Christmas dinner. This is completely unacceptable. I am especially concerned about the impact on older people who may not have been able to heat their homes in the middle of winter if they relied on electric heating.

"With so many rural areas having no access to the gas network, a stable and reliable electricity supply is essential for making sure people can heat their food and their homes."

Kirsty added that she thought the problem was much more serious than initially thought. She said, "In 2010 many people thought that, because of extremely bad weather and demand for heating, the power cuts may have been a one-off. But to have power cuts occur again when the weather was much milder suggests a much bigger problem."

Kirsty has asked four questions; what assessment did Western Power Distribution make of electricity network after power cuts in 2010, what problems with the electricity network did they identify in those assessments, will they be upgrading the electricity network as part of their programme of improvement and, if not, how will they fund it.

Kirsty concluded, "I hope Western Power Distribution will be able to answer my questions - and more importantly will make the upgrades necessary to make sure next everyone can enjoy their Christmas."

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