Power outages have returned to haunt North and Middle Caicos. As summer heat arrives and the demand for fans and air conditioners increases, daily power failures have returned to become a nuisance to local residents.
One resident, who has a voltage meter online across his single phase input, reports that at his western Middle Caicos residence the expected 220 volt nominal voltage often reads as low as 180 volts. This then would put the average 110 volt power for appliances at only 90 volts and possibly much lower power on one power leg of some outlets. For years residents have complained that low voltage, voltage spikes, snaps and unscheduled outages have cause failures by overheating appliance motors and electronic controls. When snaps occur the power is lost for less than one second. This is destructive to computers and computerized devices controlling modern appliances.
The outages are usually resolved within a one hour time span but they also frequently reoccur. Rarely does a day go by without there being at least one power failure. These problems have been ongoing for years. Fortis Power had promised to install generation on North Caicos when the nearby Dellis Cay development was expected to go forward. However while work commenced at the site years ago it has been stalled for years. Instead Fortis has spent its capital on a multimillion dollar office building and upgrades of its overhead distribution lines in Providenciales. It was known that the grid on North and Middle Caicos is marginal. All power to the out islands is transmitted from Provo via submarine cables
The problem is affecting hundreds of residential and commercial customers.