The Star (Nairobi)

7 May 2012

Kenya: Power Restored in Makuyu, Kangundo

The Kenya Power at the weekend hired a Kenya Wildlife Service helicopter to restore the collapsed 66KV Tana 2 power lines felled by heavy rains that pounded Thika and its environs.

Thika, Makuyu, Kangundo, Kiambu, Nyandarua and part of Nairobi that are supplied with power by the two lines were engulfed by darkness after five towers fell at Daraja estate in Ruiru, Kiambu County on Friday night following a downpour. The chopper was called in to help engineers hoist the heavy towers and restore power. The operation led by the Kenya Power Company chief manager in charge of distribution, Benson Muriithi, attracted locals who braved heavy rains.

Addressing the press at the site, Muriithi said most of the affected areas were receiving power from an alternative line and assured consumers that full power supply would resume soon in all the affected areas. Muriithi decried rampant vandalism, theft and destruction of company towers, conductors, transformers and glass that hindered service to consumers. He called for stiffer penalties to deal with vandals. He said there is need for the community to saveguard company equipment so that they can continue to get energy.

He said as a long-term measure, his company would erect concrete poles to replace the wooden ones that fell during rainy season or got rotten. "As a long term measure we want to have concrete poles to address the issue of vandalism and persistent power interruptions," said Muriithi. The manager said ones the Witeithie estate substation was completed it would boost power supply in Thika and Nairobi.

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