Friday, 14 May 2004 - 4:01pm |

Policing continues during power outage

2 min read

Police services will be maintained in Wellington City Area late on Monday night, 17 May despite a planned two-hour power outage while the Central Police Station’s electrical switchboard is upgraded and preventive maintenance work undertaken.

Building services and I & T infrastructure will progressively be shutdown from 8pm with the power disconnected for up to two hours from midnight. Once power is restored it could be another two to three hours before the building’s services and I & T infrastructure are powered up. All services should be back in normal operation by 5am.

Acting Inspector Paul Berry, Wellington Area Response Manager, says the public should not notice any real difference except that 111 emergency telephone calls for assistance will be answered by the Northern Communications Centre in Auckland instead of Central Communications in Wellington. General calls will be answered by staff at main police stations elsewhere in the Wellington District and relayed to patrols by radio or cellphone.

"We’ll still have the same level of police patrolling the area and providing coverage as we would on any other Monday night," he says. "Patrols will use Kilbirnie Community Policing Centre as a base during the short outage period.

"If criminals believe the outage provides them with an opportunity to offend they can think again because police will still be on the streets."

A police presence will be maintained at Wellington Central. The watchhouse public counter service will temporarily relocate during the evening to a police caravan parked in Victoria Street, outside the station’s main entrance.

Any prisoners arrested overnight will be held at Lower Hutt Police Station.

"Once power supplies are switched back on the key infrastructure services will be progressively restored during the night and staff can move back into the building," Inspector Berry says.
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Inspector Gary Allcock, Central Communications Centre Manager, says the planned outage provides an ideal opportunity to practice the Centre’s business continuity plan.

"If we had to relocate services in a real emergency, staff need to know what to do and the detail of our continuity and recovery plans," he says. "Monday night’s short outage gives us a test opportunity."

It’s the first time major work has been done on the switchboard since the building opened in 1991.


Media contact:

Inspector Paul Berry, mobile 027 230 3766
Kaye Calder, mobile 027 437 3020