Western Power is investing $900,000 to upgrade the powerlines between Denmark and Walpole in preparation for bushfire season.

The works are part of Western Power’s $1.2 billion program of work scheduled for the 2015/16 financial year.

Head of Works Program Planning, Lou Tognolini, said up to 450 poles and 20 kilometres of powerline would be replaced.

“We have identified poles and wires that are old and need replacing or that have old pole top equipment that could pose a fire risk,” Mr Tognolini said.  

“High priority work starts on 23 October and must be completed by the end of November when the bushfire season officially commences. However the remaining work in the region will continue into the New Year with completion before winter 2016.

“Our crews, trucks and cherry pickers will be particularly visible throughout November and well into the New Year, due to the volume of work in the region, and we ask people to exercise caution as they travel on roads alongside workers.”

Mr Tognolini said Western Power crews would work as safely and quickly as possible to complete the work.

“While we will do as much ‘live line’ work as possible without turning off the power, there will be times when power will be interrupted to ensure the safety of customers and our crews,” he said.

“As there is only one main power line that supplies electricity to Walpole, it is likely some customers will experience interruptions from work occurring at the Denmark end of the line.

“We have arranged for our mobile generator to be on stand-by if a long outage is required for customers in Walpole, and if it is needed then brief interruptions will occur as we connect and disconnect it from the network.

“We understand that power interruptions can be inconvenient but outages are necessary to allow crews to safely complete network upgrades that will benefit customers in the long run.

“Western Power provides advanced notice of planned electricity supply outages to assist our customers to make alternative arrangements.”

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