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Taumarunui-based line mechanic Himona Knowles working on an insulator.

Major Power Up for Taumarunui Complete

21 March 2024

The Lines Company Finished $1.4 Million Investment in Taumarunui

Electrical distribution business, The Lines Company (TLC) has completed a major 10-week upgrade project of the electrical grid in Taumarunui.

It involved replacing ageing assets across 143 sites essential to the operation of the town’s electricity network. Work included the replacement of 67 power poles, improving the reliability of the power supply and reducing the risk of outages for residents of Taumarunui for generations to come.

Work on the ground began in mid-January with TLC crews working alongside specialists from Omexom, who relocated to Taumarunui for the duration of the upgrade.

TLC’s general manager – network Gerhard Buitendach said this had been a massive project for Taumarunui and will provide the town with a more reliable power supply for decades to come.

“Completing this project is fantastic news for Taumarunui,” says Buitendach.

“We’ve replaced a significant amount of aged infrastructure, including power poles, crossarms, and lightning arrestors, bringing the town’s electricity network up to a very high standard.”

There were many short-term outages throughout the project, with around 1,500 homes being affected.

“Getting this project across the line has been a massive team effort, not just from our staff and contractors, but from the residents of Taumarunui. We wouldn’t have been able to safely complete our work without the patience and cooperation of the community.”

The investment is a part of TLC’s wider asset management plan across the entire network where we continuously strive to find the right balance between affordability and reliability for our customers.

TLC’s general manager – service delivery Jared Murrell expressed his immense pride and satisfaction with the combined efforts of TLC staff and contractors to get the job done in Taumarunui.

“I’m stoked with the efforts from our team and contractors to finish these upgrades on time and on budget.”

Murrell said in total, there were 41 planned power outages throughout the project across 28 days.

“We know turning the power off can be a real inconvenience for our customers, but it’s a necessary part of working with electricity. It keeps our teams, contractors, and the public safe. This was a big project for our network and required many planned outages but will significantly reduce the risk of future unplanned outages in Taumarunui.”

“I’m really happy with how quickly and safely we were able to get everything done, minimising the disruption to the community. With that being said, the people of Taumarunui have been amazing, showing a lot of patience, sticking with us through the project, we really appreciate all their support.”

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