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Ausgrid has cancelled planned outages for maintenance at locations across its network due to the catastrophic fire danger forecast for the Greater Sydney and Greater Hunter.

High temperatures, strong winds and low humidity are forecast to create extremely dangerous conditions.

Ausgrid Chief Operating Officer, Trevor Armstrong, said that given the forecast conditions, a decision has been taken to cancel most planned work across the electricity network.

“Catastrophic fire conditions and temperatures in the high 30s have been predicted across our network,” Mr Armstrong said.

“The safety of the community and our people is our highest priority and that is why we have cancelled planned maintenance jobs where power would need to be interrupted for extended periods.

“Limited work will proceed but only in cases where it has been deemed safe to do so.”

Ausgrid has emergency crews ready to respond to any unplanned outages and restore power as quickly as possible.

“With strong winds expected we’re reminding people to stay well back from any fallen powerlines,” Mr Armstrong said.

“If you see fallen wires always assume they’re live, stay 8m away, which is about two car lengths, and call us on 131 388.”

The Rural Fire Service is advising residents to avoid bushfire-prone areas.

Bushfires can cut the power supply to homes or businesses, and Ausgrid is urging customers who rely on medical equipment to be prepared in case of any outages.

“If you rely on a continuous power supply for life-support equipment make sure you have a back-up plan in place in case supply is interrupted,” Mr Armstrong said.

“Check if a friend or neighbour is available to assist you if needed and keep emergency numbers handy.

“Double check that your back-up battery is fully charged at all times, as understanding how your life-support equipment works can be critical during an outage.”

Charlotte Pordage is Editor of Utility magazine, a position she has held since November 2018. She joined the team as an Associate Editor in October 2017, after sharpening her writing and editing skills across a range of print and digital publications. Charlotte graduated from Royal Holloway, University of London, in 2011 with joint honours in English and Latin. When she's not putting together Australia's only dedicated utility magazine, she can usually be found riding her horse or curled up with a good book.

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