Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The saga of the burnt transformer

I have just found out from some of my neighbours whose houses are near this transformer that we, in this estate (Umoja), are going to be 'powerless' comes tomorrow morning at 8.30 am.

Now, this story has its beginnings sometime last week when we had one of our frequent and highly irritating and frustrating power outages early in the morning at around 7.00 am. Of course, Kenya Power (Weakness), hardly EVER answers their emergency lines and so it takes quite a while to rouse somebody in authority to deal with the latest outage. It took me at least 15 minutes to get such a person to take action.

Then, there's the matter of their emergency offices being all the way across town in Mbaraki from where their trucks and men have to come which includes crossing the one and only access to the North Coast, Nyali Bridge. At that time of the morning there are traffic snarl-ups there and so, this so-called emergency crew would take at least the better part of an hour to make it's way across this bridge and to any area in the North Mainland.

Well, on that day, there was supposed to be a problem around Nakumatt Cinemax and the 'official' working on it called me around mid-morning to ask if I had got my power back to which I replied, 'No!' He was very surprised with this answer as they had restored power and could not understand why we in this estate were still 'powerless'.

So, he decided to investigate and finally found that the transformer in the estate had just blown (my neighbours tell me that there was a big bang!), and there had even been flames. Of course, this meant that while the rest of the area had power, we were going to be without and this 'official' would not commit himself as to when it would be restored. The only thing he could tell me was that the matter was no longer in his jurisdiction and that he had informed his boss about it and it would be taken care of.

Well, I saw one of their cars coming in not long after and people working on the offending transformer. But, they left around lunch time and I never saw them working on the thing after, though, I found out today that they came back later in the afternoon and did something more and we got our power back, thankfully, after 4.00 pm.

Now, to come back to tomorrow. If we had a whole day's outage last week thanks to the burnt transformer and we believed that the work was done, why is it that without notice to us, the residents, is Kenya Power going to make us suffer (in this extreme heat), another 'powerless' day? What is it that they did last week? Or didn't do, for that matter?

And come to think of it, why did the transformer blow just as the power was being restored around Nakumatt Cinemax? Was it due to a power surge? Can somebody qualified enough out there investigate this, please? Why is Kenya Power making us suffer from these constant outages which result in a lot of damage? This outage has also not been advertized, yet it is going to (according to them), take 8 long hours of outage, i.e. we are supposed to get back our power at 5.00 pm and there is a big IF to this statement.

Can somebody at Kenya Power please, answer the above questions?

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