Getting power back to flood affected areas

Many communities on the east coast of Australia have been badly affected by the heavy rains and flooding, while others remain on alert.

My thoughts are with the family and loved ones of the two people who have sadly lost their lives, and with all affected communities at this difficult time, including those in my electorate of Hume.

While rains have eased, parts of the electricity networks remain affected by the floods.

While tens of thousands of customers have had their electricity restored, as it has become safe to do so, there are still around 3,600 customers without power.

I have spoken with CEOs of network companies including Endeavour Energy, Essential Energy and Ausgrid urging them to ensure power is reconnected to households and businesses as soon as it is safe to do so.

However, access to flood areas remains challenging, with some cables still submerged.

Crews from the network businesses have been working overnight and deployed, along with specialist equipment, to flood affected areas in preparation for restoration once access is available.

Reconnections will continue over the coming days as hardworking crews continue to work with the emergency services to get access to properties and deliver fuel for generators.

I have also been in touch with the Australian Energy Regulator to ensure that protections are in place for households and small businesses as the clean-up continues.

Customers should contact their electricity network service provider for up to date information regarding customer assistance, life support arrangements and access to generators while power is being restored.

I urge anyone experiencing financial distress as a result of floods to contact their electricity retailer to discuss a payment plan.

Source: Australian Government