Utilities progress ahead of schedule

The Island Newspaper, Ambergris Caye, Belize            Vol. 10, No. 39            October 26, 2000

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In keeping the residents of San Pedro and our readers in touch with the excellent progress the utility companies are making since the hurricane hit San Pedro, we bring to you the following report.

BEL

    Mr. Jose Moreno of Belize Electricity Limited has reported to the San Pedro Sun that as of Thursday, October 26th the town core of San Pedro should be almost fully electrified. As reported in previous issues, all Barrier Reef Drive regained electricity only a few days after the hurricane. The hardworking people at BEL have now managed to bring electricity to the people on Pescador Drive and Angel Coral Street, all the way to Island Galleria. There are only a few houses in this area that have not regained power due to damaged services, which BEL is working on. As of last Sunday, the Main Transmission Line has been functioning.

    Mr. Moreno says that by this weekend, BEL hopes to have all services connected from the Boca del Rio area going south to Casa Mañana. In the severely affected areas of San Juan, San Pedrito, Elliot Subdivision, Escalante Subdivision and San Pablo work will commence as soon as these areas are cleaned up. It is expected that it will take another week or so before electricity is restored. Mr. Moreno explained that BEL will commence work on Feeder 3 (North Ambergris Caye) on Thursday but a time frame for electricity to be restored was uncertain.

    BEL also reports that since many of the meters were destroyed or are presently being worked on, meter readings will be done at a later date. Homes with undamaged meters will be given a bill as soon as meter readings are completed. On Tuesday, Mr. Neville Samuels of BEL told the San Pedro Sun that they had not addressed the situation of giving their customers a grace period for payments as BEL's main priority at this time is to restore power to the island. 

BTL

    As of Tuesday evening, Belize Telecommunications Limited was unable to supply this paper with a progress report as they were still compiling it. Nevertheless, customers with lines that were not damaged are now able to make local, national long distance and international calls. Customers with mobile cellular units can also make cellular calls.

    With regards to billing and payment, BTL will be distributing their bills as usual and no grace period to the customers was confirmed. BTL will be calling customers before disconnection is done to give their clients an opportunity to pay first.

WASA

    As reported in previous issues of the San Pedro Sun, WASA exceeded all expectations by restoring 99% of the entire island with water in a very short period of time.

    On another note, WASA advises its customers that due to a lack of electricity at the San Pedro office, bills will not be sent to customers until the end of the month. Their office is now open and anyone wishing to submit payment may do so at this time. During this period, no disconnections will be made by WASA. They also remind residents that a thirty-day grace period is given to customers after the billing date.



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