30 November 2022

Power back on for all Canberra households after Sunday evening hailstorm

| Lottie Twyford
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More than 3000 households were left without power after Sunday evening’s hailstorm swept through. Photo: James Coleman.

As of 5 pm yesterday (29 November), all South Canberra households affected by Sunday night’s storm have had their power returned.

It follows almost two full days of work by Evoenergy crews.

A spokesperson for the company confirmed its last five large jobs were completed in the suburbs of Fisher, Rivett and Chapman yesterday morning.

These included scaffolding, pole replacements and the stringing of new conductors.

‘We were pleased to see those jobs completed at lunchtime [yesterday],” the spokesperson said.

“Yesterday afternoon our crews moved between single premises that had individual outages, including working one-on-one with a small number of customers that had more complex damage,” Evoenergy said.

“We want to thank everyone in Weston Creek and Tuggeranong for their patience over the past two days.”

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Sunday evening’s (27 November) hailstorm brought ferocious winds and hail to the areas of Weston Creek, Woden and Tuggeranong, uprooting established trees and sending garden sheds flying.

Homes and powerlines sustained damage in the storm – something Evoenergey said was becoming more common as the frequency of intense storms continues to increase.

At the height of the emergency on Sunday evening, 3858 properties across South Canberra were left without power.

At 4 pm on Monday, 28 November that number had been drastically reduced to 236.

By yesterday (Tuesday, 29 November) morning it was only 94.

People who found themselves without power were encouraged to stay in a property with power if it was possible.

More information about what to do in a blackout is also available at Evoenergy.

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Bureau of Meteorology meteorologist Helen Kirkup told Region these sorts of localised storms actually weren’t that unusual.

“Storms are always reasonably isolated and in particular, when you get severe storms, it’s often the case you get one in an area and an area of clearer weather next to it,” she said.

“This particular one came from the northwest and intensified across the ranges – came across the ACT – and it weakened quite a bit as it travelled.”

Reports to the bureau of storm activity began before 7 pm but these were over “reasonably quickly”.

Ms Kirkup said previous storms in recent times had felt different (and carried more rain with them) because there was so much less wind associated with them.

Storm activity was also recorded across parts of NSW.

ACT State Emergency Services (SES) volunteers have been training for the past six months ahead of what’s expected to be a rise in severe weather across the Territory this summer.

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