About a hundred households in Helvoirt are without power for the second day in a row. A cable broke on Wednesday afternoon, but Enexis employees cannot find the broken cable. “Lamps, nothing. Suction camp, nothing. Nothing works,” says Jan van Engelen. “The elderly can hardly go outside because automatic doors and the elevator do not work either.”
It’s dark inside Jan’s house. “We have been without power since five o’clock yesterday afternoon. I was just going to cook, the lights on the extractor hood went crazy and everything was off.”
“They can’t be showered by home care now either.”
“Then you hope that it will be resolved within a few hours.” Jan soon receives a text message from grid operator Enexis stating that the outage would last until eight o’clock on Wednesday evening. “Then it became 12:30 AM, then 8:00 AM, and then it was 12:00 PM.” Jan is going crazy about it.
Employees outside let Jan know that they have no idea where the malfunction is. “Something with a cable, but where is the big question.” Jan sees how sniffer dogs try to find the broken cable on Wednesday evening, but that is without result. Since a few years, Enexis has had five ‘stream dogs’ that can smell combustion gases at a depth of 70 centimetres.
“We can just throw this away soon.”
“I expect that it will not be resolved today, that is what the employees of Enexis say themselves,” says Jan with a sigh. An Enexis spokesperson emphasizes that they hope that power will be restored today. “We are busy with it. We find it really annoying.”
Jan’s neighbors almost all have a walker and can hardly leave the house now. “Because the doors don’t open and close automatically now. And now they can’t be showered by the home care.” Jan’s elevator doesn’t work either. Fortunately, most residents can go to the nursing home via a walkway and take the elevator there, which still works.
When we speak to Jan around noon on Thursday, he receives another text message from Enexis. “Look, here it is: they now expect the outage to be resolved at four o’clock.” But then another text message comes in: “Now they send that there is power again.”
Jan immediately goes to look. “Lamps, nothing. Suction camp, nothing. Nothing works. I actually don’t dare open the freezer.” After almost nineteen hours Jan looks in the freezer. “Bread is thawed, meat is still slightly frozen. We can just throw this away later.”
Enexis is still investigating how the fault originated.
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