MRC Pontiac Warden Jane Toller is seeking an explanation from Hydro-Quebec regarding power outages in the Upper Pontiac following the violent storms on the weekend. Despite there being very little visible damage in the area, which includes the municipalities of Sheenboro, Chichester, Waltham and l’Isle-aux-Allumettes, the region was without power for roughly 48 hours.
“I will ask for an explanation from Hydro Quebec for the 48 hours without electricity,” Toller posted on Facebook.
The Upper Pontiac has some of the worst cell phone coverage in the Pontiac, and as some commenters pointed out that combined with a power outage, it is a massive public safety issue.
Contacted by CHIP 101.9, Hydro-Québec’s Community Relations Advisor Alain Paquette said that he will be able to answer the question after they fix the ongoing outages elsewhere in the province. As of Friday afternoon, there were still more than 40,000 customers without electricity, mainly in Outaouais, the Laurentians and Lanaudière.
“The warden, Jane Toller, and the mayor of Isle-aux-Allumettes, Corey Spence, questioned me about the outages that occurred in MRC Pontiac. I am very sensitive to the situation experienced by citizens and I want to understand what happened. I have made a commitment to elected officials to shed light on this situation and to provide them with feedback as soon as possible. Like many colleagues, I am currently still mobilized by the emergency measures related to the blackouts still in progress in Quebec following the storms and also involved in the management of the flooding of the Gatineau River. As soon as the situation returns to normal, we will analyze the causes of the outages that have occurred in this sector and I will then propose a meeting with elected officials to present our conclusions and observations in complete transparency,” Paquette said (translated).