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Restoring power in First Nation communities could take weeks: Manitoba Hydro

Manitoba Hydro power lines. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods

Damage caused by wildfires means restoring power to two Manitoba First Nations could take weeks, according to Manitoba Hydro.

Nearly 100 poles need to be replaced at Little Grand Rapids and Pauingassi First Nation communities — something Hydro’s Bruce Owen says is easier said than done.

“This line is in an area which is not accessible by road,” he said. “That means flying materials and people in to do the work, and that will take a period of time.”

Read more: Hundreds without power due to weather, pole fires: Manitoba Hydro

Owen couldn’t say what that period of time might be, but in years past, similar work has taken a few weeks.

And, when crews are able to get onsite, he said, they may discover even further damage, which could add to the timeline.

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“We’re throwing as many resources as possible at this — in people, equipment and helicopters,” said Owen.

“All of that is being marshalled right now to get in there as quickly as possible, because we understand — completely — the need to get people home.”

Click to play video: 'Weekend storm rips through southern Manitoba, peeling roofs off buildings and knocking out power for thousands' Weekend storm rips through southern Manitoba, peeling roofs off buildings and knocking out power for thousands
Weekend storm rips through southern Manitoba, peeling roofs off buildings and knocking out power for thousands – Jun 8, 2021

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