SSEN completes Jura-mainland cable replacement
A project to replace the
subsea electricity cable connecting the Isle of Jura to Tayvallich in Argyll
is now complete. It follows the detection of a fault in cable fault in
Teams from Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) connected
the new cable to the main electricity network on Tuesday 31 March, returning
the network to normal operation to ensure a safe and reliable supply of
electricity to the islands of Jura, Islay and Colonsay.
SSEN received a marine licence to carry out the cable replacement on 24
January and a specialist marine vessel sailed to the west coast to commence
installation as quickly as possible. Continued unfavourable weather conditions
meant SSEN’s teams were unable to secure the three-day window of suitable
sea conditions required to lay the cable.
The vessel remained
on standby and was mobilised at first light on Wednesday 25 March to commence
installation, with SSEN’s regional teams making final connections to energise
the cable on Tuesday 31 March.
Since November, Jura, Islay and Colonsay have been powered by a combination
of Bowmore Power Station and local renewable generation to ensure customers
on the islands continued to receive the power they need.
Mark Rough, SSEN’s Director of Customer Operations, said: “Keeping
the power flowing to the communities we serve is our key priority at SSEN
and we’d like to take this opportunity to thank the community and local
businesses for their patience and support as our teams worked on this essential
cable replacement project.
“Adverse weather conditions, including Storms Brendan, Ciara and Dennis,
presented our teams with various challenges along the way, but I’d like
to thank everyone involved, from our subsea teams, contract partners and
renewable generators; to our colleagues working on the islands, Bowmore
Power Station, and our control room for their continued efforts to help
return the network to normal operation as soon as possible.”
Michael Russell, MSP for Argyll and Bute, added: “SSEN and their partners
have done a tremendous job in restoring the link despite appalling weather
delaying the operation for a considerable period of time. Their commitment
to ensuring that the islands are connected has been total even though it
has involved laying a completely new cable at very considerable cost. They
have also been very good at keeping the communities - and elected representatives
- informed. I am sure everyone is grateful to them - and everyone hopes
it will never happen again.”