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Belco three quarters of the way through trenching work

End in sight: Belco’s cable upgrade project is now three-quarters complete (File photograph)

Electricity provider Belco has reached another milestone in its plans to upgrade underground cables across the island.

The company has now replaced cabling along almost 13 of the 17 miles of route – the three-quarter way point towards completion.

But the company cannot say when it will cross the finish line because outside factors could cause future delays.

To date, 12.7 miles of trenches have been dug, conduit installed and backfilled with 4.3 miles remaining.

Once the trenching project has been completed, the Government will repave the roads.

A Belco spokesman said that some cables were more than 50 years old, causing faults, system vulnerabilities, and increased maintenance costs.

He added: “In addition, Belco’s grid was not originally designed to accommodate generation from renewable sources distributed across the network.

“That’s why Belco is replacing 40 per cent of the underground transmission cables, which will ensure a much more robust grid with less potential for faults as well as being able to accommodate large-scale renewables such as the solar installation at the Finger near the LF Wade International Airport.”

The spokesman said that the project would have taken seven years to complete had work been conducted on individual sections.

He said: “However, working in several locations simultaneously means it’s taken just over 18 months to complete 75 per cent of the works.”

Wayne Caines, the president of Belco, said: “We understand these upgrades are causing delays and frustration for motorists.

“However, these upgrades are critical to ensuring a more reliable and adaptable grid that will serve us for many years to come and enable the addition of large-scale renewables to be added to the grid.

“On behalf of our entire team at Belco I would like to ask for the public’s understanding and patience as we complete these critical infrastructure upgrades that will ensure more secure energy for Bermuda and are instrumental as we progress in our journey towards a sustainable energy future.”

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Published November 02, 2022 at 7:55 am (Updated November 02, 2022 at 7:55 am)

Belco three quarters of the way through trenching work

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