For Immediate Release
Fire on Bluefish transmission line still burning
YELLOWKNIFE, NT (June 17, 2014) – A fire, believed to have been started by a raven touching a power conductor on the hydroelectric transmission line not far from the Bluefish plant, continues to burn this morning.
The fire started just before 5:30 p.m. yesterday shutting down power to Yellowknife, Behchoko and Dettah. Diesel generators were started and power was fully restored to the communities approximately 75 minutes later.
Two water bomber aircraft were dropping water within 90 minutes of the incident and Department of Environment and Natural Resources (ENR) fire crews were onsite by 8:30 p.m.
ENR fire crews are still on-site and NTPC is supporting their efforts. The response may take several days and fire crews are making use of the Bluefish camp as needed.
At this time, no assets are at risk of damage, beyond the transmission towers involved in the fire. An additional plant operator and line crews will be arriving on-site this morning to further evaluate the situation.
NTPC implemented a 15-point reliability improvement plan in the fall of 2012 with the goal of reducing the frequency of customer outages on the Snare System by 70% by September 2015. At the present time, eight of the 15 identified initiatives have been completed. All seven remaining initiatives are underway.
Several of the initiatives are related to deterring birds from affecting power distribution. The main one being an upgrade of bird deterrent strips on tower cross bars on the Bluefish line, which is 95 per cent complete.
Media contact: Pam Coulter Communications Manager Tel: 867-874-5202 Cell: 867-876-1095