News / Around 2,400 properties remain without power as engineers undertake repairs

AROUND 2,400 properties are now without power in Shetland – roughly 400 less than this morning – as electricity engineers continue to battle the elements to restore supply to homes and businesses.

Over the past 24 hours Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) Distribution teams have replaced core infrastructure and points of damage in Voe and Yell, as well as kilometres of overhead line.

This is to rebuild the critical ‘backbone’ of the network which will enable wider restoration. It comes after widespread snow and ice earlier this week which caused significant damage to overhead lines.

Power has been successfully restored today to customers in the Skerries, parts of Voe, northern parts of Whalsay, and clusters elsewhere in Shetland.

Photo: SSEN Distribution

Restoration efforts were boosted this morning with the arrival of 15 power line crews from the mainland and Orkney, with additional engineers travelling throughout the day and on tonight’s ferry.


A 125-strong team will continue to carry out repairs until power is restored to all properties affected, and this remains likely to extend to the end of this week.

Depending on weather conditions and travel availability, it is possible this could extend into the weekend for some properties. A more detailed assessment of estimated restoration times will be provided tomorrow (Thursday).

Helicopters have surveyed overhead power lines today to assess the situation alongside foot patrols, with significant network damage recorded in West Mainland and parts of Voe.

Some circuits in these areas will require significant rebuilds and teams are utilising large-scale mobile generation sets to restore power to customers until permanent repairs are carried out.

SSEN said it continues to work closely with Shetland Islands Council, the Care for People Group, and the Local Resilience Partnership to ensure extra support is provided to those who need it most.

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The company is providing non-perishable food and connecting mobile generation to power rest centres at the following locations:

  • Walls Public Hall, Walls, Shetland, ZE2 9PF – open 24 hours to provide hot drinks and a warm hub.
  • Symbister Hall, Walsay, Symbister, Whalsay, ZE2 9AA – hall opening at 10am until 7am for hot drinks and a warm hub, with a catering van operating from 10am – 7pm.
  • Isbister Public Hall, Whalsay, ZE2 9AJ – opening hours will be advertised on the local Facebook page.
  • Voe Public Hall, Isles Road, Voe, ZE2 9PT – opening at 9am until 12 noon providing hot drinks and a warm space.
  • South Nesting Hall, Skellister, Shetland, ZE2 9PP – opening from 10am – 2pm and 4pm – 6pm offering hot drinks and a warm space.
  • Burravoe Public Hall, Burravoe, Yell, ZE2 9AY – opening from 12pm until 8pm for hot drinks and a warm space.
  • North Ness Public Hall, Ulsta, Yell, ZE2 9BD – opening from 9am until 7pm to provide a warm space and hot drinks.
  • Bixter Hall, Bixter, ZE2 9LU – opening from 10am until 6pm to provide a warm hub and hot drinks (call 01595 810670 to confirm if the hall is open before travelling).
  • Sandness Public Hall, Sandness, ZE2 9PL – opening from 12 noon until 3pm to provide a warm space and hot drinks.
  • Skeld Hall, Skeld, ZE2 9NL – opening from 12 noon until 8pm to provide a warm hub and hot drinks.
  • Walls Shop, Walls, ZE2 9PF – providing fuel.
  • Skellister Stores, Catfirth, South Nesting, ZE2 9PP – will be connected by mobile generation tomorrow morning and, once connected, the fuel station will open as per normal opening hours.
  • A further update will be provided by Shetland Islands Council on welfare locations tomorrow morning.

Mark Macdonald, head of region at SSEN Distribution, said: “Today has been about rebuilding the core spine of the network.

“Following three days of significant travel constraints, severe access issues and continued adverse weather conditions, we’re making up for lost time with engineers working since first light today.

“By tomorrow, a 125-strong team will continue this rebuild, while simultaneously reconnecting homes by re-routing the network and connecting large-scale mobile generation to restore power to our customers.

“We’d encourage customers to take advantage of the welfare provisions organised in partnership with Shetland Islands Council and the Local Resilience Partnership, working closely with DH Marine who have worked tirelessly throughout the day to connect mobile generation to power local public halls.

“We’ve delivered non-perishable food items to these locations this evening to support the joint welfare effort, ensuring the worst affected communities have access to hot food, drink and a warm space.”

The next update will be provided mid-morning tomorrow.

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