Update on power outages in western Victoria – 16 October

16 October, 2022

Over recent days, we have been taking proactive steps to protect critical power assets in Mooroopna at risk of flooding. These steps have included building a levee, sandbagging infrastructure and using pumps to keep water out. 

Despite these actions, rising flood waters in the Goulburn River breached our levee and reached a level at our Mooroopna zone substation that makes it unsafe to keep power on at the site.  As a result, earlier this morning we de-energised the substation.

Safety is always our priority, and we have taken this action to reduce the risk to the community and minimise long-term damage to electricity assets that may lead to prolonged power outages.

The zone substation supplies about 10,688 homes and businesses in the Mooroopna, Tatura, Ardmona, Murchison, Dhurringile, Toolamba, Byrneside and surrounding towns.

We have been able to continue providing power to about 4,700 customers connected to the zone substation by supplying them via other parts of our network.  We’re also exploring alternatives to secure generators to provide power for affected customers.

At this stage, about 5,954 customers will remain off power until it is safe for us to re-energise the site.

Power will be restored once the water subsides and we assess it is safe to do so. Given the current flooding predictions, the zone substation may be off supply for multiple days.

We are investigating opportunities to restore power to more customers over coming days. This work includes deploying four large-scale generators to power critical sites and homes, redirecting network supply from other areas and upgrading and building new assets. We will keep customers updated as we progress this work.

We know this is a difficult situation for the local community and we are working closely with emergency agencies and local authorities as this flooding emergency continues.

In support of other flood affected areas, our Mobile Emergency Response Vehicle (MERV) will be based at the relief centre at the Bendigo Showgrounds today to provide local residents updates about electricity supplies and charging points for mobile devices.  When access is available, we plan to bring MERV into Tatura to provide similar support to local customers.

All customers can keep updated on restoration times via our website and SMS.

For customers returning to their properties after flooding we advise:   

  1. Proceed with caution – don’t assume your power is disconnected and do not try to operate any electrical appliances if there has been flood damage.
  2. Get a Registered Electrical Contractor to check your appliances and switchboard to confirm they are safe to use.
  3. If you’ve been disconnected by us, then your Registered Electrical Contractor will need to provide us with a certificate of electrical safety following their inspection.  We’ll reconnect the service remotely.

More information here.