Horizon Power has upgraded the electricity networks in 13 remote Aboriginal communities across the Kimberley, Mid West and Goldfields regions to ensure more regional residents have access to safer and more reliable power.
Through its $3.8 million Aboriginal Community Embedded Networks program, Horizon Power has standardised electrical infrastructure, including poles, wires, green domes and underground cabling, across the communities to ensure networks meet current safety and utility-grade power supply standards.
Network ownership has also been transferred to Horizon Power, allowing it to take responsibility for infrastructure maintenance, improved customer services, power affordability and outages support for the small communities.
As part of the upgrade works, Horizon Power has installed 53kW LED streetlights in each community. The lights will reduce the operating costs and carbon emissions associated with streetlighting, and significantly improve night-time visibility, making the communities safer for road users and pedestrians alike.
General Manager Operations, Tiri Sanderson, said Horizon Power was pleased to deliver real-world benefits to some of the state’s most remotely located residents.
“The legacy networks that these upgrades have replaced were not built to current standards. They were often in poor condition that resulted in an unreliable and sometimes unsafe power supply to the communities,” Ms Sanderson said.
“These upgrades have been a long time coming and they will significantly improve how power is delivered to residents.”
“They’ll also provide the same level of service to people living in these communities as is already enjoyed by our customers living in the nearby towns.”
The communities included in this program are Emu Creek, Bell Springs, Mud Springs, Munthanmar, Koongie Park and Mardiwah Loop in the East Kimberley; Joy Springs, Karnparmi, Gillarong and Loanbun in the West Kimberley; Woodgamia and Buttah Windee in the Mid West; and Marmion Village in the Goldfields.
The network improvements have been well received by the communities involved in the program.
Shane Skinner, a spokesperson for Karnparmi, said the community was very happy with the upgrades and new streetlights, and that residents were pleased that they could turn to Horizon Power for customer service and outages.
“Now we’ve got the Horizon Power app, too. When we need to put credit onto our accounts, we can just go online. And the app keeps us updated on power outages and gives us all the information we need,” Mr Skinner said.
“When the power goes out, we can just sit back, be patient and wait for the Horizon mob.”
Residents from the communities will now be able to call Horizon Power’s fault line on
13 23 51 for network supply issues and to receive 24/7 assistance from a customer services expert.
Horizon Power worked with regional contractors and Aboriginal-owned businesses to deliver this project and will continue to work with locals over the lifetime of the networks.
The program was delivered as part of Horizon Power’s $75 million Renew the Regions program, a WA Recovery Plan initiative aimed at creating jobs and improving services in the regions.
Source: Horizon Power