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Storm Eunice

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Been having a bit of bother recently !

Storm Eunice came through on Friday - amazingly strong winds, things being blow all over the place. Not surprisingly we lost our power as we are on overhead supply. That was Friday just before lunch. Here we are on the following Wednesday  and we still don't have power  :bang:

The local Wi-Fi mast must be on the same feed so we lost use of mobile phones, and my land line uses a small Panasonic DBS exchange (which needs power) so we lost the land line.

I have a small (4kW) site generator - buried in the back of the tractor shed behind much equipment, but I managed to extract it. Starts first and every pull, but fails to run - though with far too much Ether squirted at it I got it to run long enough to power our private sewage system and drain it's processed effluent to prevent the overflow that was threatening. Then it stalled and I can't restart it!

At this point our water started to flow brown! Various pumping stations obviously without power in the local area including the one next door, which although it has a generator they hadn't started it up.

Can I somehow rig up my massive 110 kW generator 'jury rig' to power the farm. Well I came to the conclusion NO not safely - distance too far - not enough heavy cable and involves crossing vehicle paths.

Then the gas ran out !!!! We don't have gas but the hob in the kitchen (our only way to cook at the moment) uses 47kG propane bottles - luckily spare to hand and installed.

To get phone messages involved a 3 mile run down to the local supermarket - every time I go UK Power Networks update me with assurance that power will be restored by 23.30 and every day this hasn't come true.

Had to cancel one set of cottage guests due Friday afternoon, and have two more sets coming this Friday who's booking is very much at risk if things don't get sorted.

This morning at about 2:20 the power came back, then 10 minutes later there was a a big flash, power was off, and through the bedroom window I could see people with torches poking about with the 11 kV lines and 'recloser' equipment that's on our veg patch. Still no power BUT the local phone mast seems to be working.

I have managed to borrow a small 'suitcase generator' from a friend that currently is powering the boiler for the cottages, this PC, and the Klargester sewage System, and by borrowing the Wi-Fi dongle from the CNC Plasma Table and using my iPhone as a 'hot spot' now can connect to the internet.

. . . is this the promised apocalypse  :bugeye:

120 hours so far without power - no big deal but if we hadn't had a log burner and a gas hob we'd have been rather stuck

Oh and we had a large chestnut tree fall across a fence line - no immediate danger of stock escaping - low priority - when I inspected 24 hours later I found that it had severed one of our water feeds in the field and had been gushing (metered) water at full bore for at least 24 hours  :bang:

Not much other damage - 3 large green house pane lost, top cap of a 'street light' in the yard has disappeared, loads of branches blown every which where !

Pete W.:
Hi there, Andrew,

I'm pleased that you don't report any damage 'to life and limb'!  But that's quite a catalogue of calamities!!

By comparison, we seem to have got off lightly here in East Hampshire.  Our neighbour one side has lost several woven fence panels.  I remember the last time we had a bit of wind it was soon said that there were no new woven fence panels in the country - apparently they are all imported from Scandinavia!  He also used to have one of those 'gazebo' things in his back garden - it ain't there now!!

Our Housing Association landlords re-roofed twenty of their houses in our street back in 2019 and I haven't heard of any lost tiles.  We have a largish willow tree on the boundary one side that drops dead twigs and small branches at the slightest breeze!  (It's not, as far as I know, the cricket bat variety.)  One consolation of being a tenant rather than a freeholder is that if there's a problem on the roof, I reach for the telephone rather than for the ladder!!  At nearly 85, that's a comfort.

Anyway, Andrew, I hope that your imminent posts here shall record stages on a path to complete recovery.

Thanks Pete,

I've just managed to collar a couple of UK Power Networks staff working on their equipment.

It turns out that the 'Recloser' has operated so many times in recent days that it has burnt off it's contacts. This unit sits on a pole and takes in the 11 kV lines and is basically a whacking great three pole HV switch that can be remotely operated via radio but has internal intelligence to trip on faults and attempt remaking the switch after predetermined intervals.

So it needs replacing which is not a small job I expect  :bugeye:

We have been having an interesting weather too. Some parts of the country more affected than the other, but one or another corner has some parts disconnected from the grid.

We had 1-4 times a year power outages from few hours to three days. I got a small diesel generator and we have a wood fired oven. That three day outage wasn't too bad for us, but our friends had only electrical heating on their house and they packed up to camp in our house and were just to come here for refugee when power came back. Quite a few people are better prepared now.

Hope it get better for you soon.

We got a lot of snow and someone stole my brother's snow blower....

We have power  :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup:

More collateral damage: The Oil boiler that heats my workshop wont fire up (man on his way) and one of my PC UPS's has died - yet to investigate = argh I don't need all this - I just want to get back in the (currently freezing) workshop and catch up with some tasks.


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