PORT Fairy business owners are on the warpath over repeated power blackouts in the town.
A three-hour power outage yesterday closed down much of the town centre, two days after another early on Monday morning.
Port Fairy businesses lost tens of thousands of dollars in trade and spoiled stock during yesterday’s three-hour outage, which hit during the lunch period.
Port Fairy IGA supermarket owner Colin Cleary said power losses were frequent in the seaside town and it appeared the power supply infrastructure was failing.
Mr Cleary said the power went off after 11am yesterday, forcing the supermarket to later close because refrigerated food was starting to spoil.
Power returned to the town centre about 2.45pm but outlying areas such as Crossley and Kirkstall were without power for a few more hours.
A Powercor spokesman said the cause was an equipment failure. The spokesman said nearly 2300 customers were affected.
The power failures this week follow a series of outages in February and March that also cost Port Fairy many thousands of dollars.
Port Fairy Business Association president Ken Brookes said his business, Brookes Timber and Hardware, had still not recovered from an outage early on Monday when the power went out again yesterday.
Mr Brookes said Monday’s outage, which started about 4.30am, knocked out the business’ computer server and its computers had not worked since.
“We have had no internet,” Mr Brookes said. “It has caused so much work, headache and stress.”
During yesterday’s outage he was left without a telephone system.
The store had been in the dark but had remained open, he said.
“Without computers, the business goes backwards,” Mr Brookes said.
“We have lost thousands of dollars this week. I am not happy with Powercor.”
The frequent power outages had led him to consider raising it as an issue with the business association.
“I’d like to do a survey around the town to see what effect the outages have had over the past 12 months,” Mr Brookes said.
Owner of Rebecca’s Café, Rebecca Nelson, said her store had lost ice-cream stock and a lot of coffee and food trade.
She had to significantly reduce the menu and offer iced instead of hot coffees. “Lots of people were not happy.”
Leading Senior Constable Glenn McDuff of Port Fairy police said he understood an area from near Dennington to Yambuk and north to Bessiebelle was without power.
The Port Fairy Medical Centre diverted most of its activities to Moyne Health Services during yesterday’s outage.
The Port Fairy library closed but the Moyne Shire Council offices remained open after switching to its backup power generator.