N.W.T.'s Snare Rapids plant potentially offline through winter

·1 min read
Workers inspect the Snare Rapids hydro unit. The Northwest Territories Power Corporation says they don't know when the facility will be back online.
Workers inspect the Snare Rapids hydro unit. The Northwest Territories Power Corporation says they don't know when the facility will be back online.

(NTPC - image credit)

The Northwest Territories Power Corporation says its Snare Rapids Hydro Unit could potentially be "out of service through the remainder of winter," according to a release sent Friday.

The plant has been offline since Feb. 2, when workers received a number of alarms about a generator failure. Backup power is being provided by burning diesel at the Jackfish Lake generating plant in Yellowknife.

The company now says the shutdown will continue for at least one month, and potentially well into the spring.

"After a thorough inspection by staff, NTPC has determined that a significant amount of work will be required before the unit can be returned to service," the release reads. "Total cost of the shutdown and a return to service date are both unknown at this time."

The culprit is a "key" component last updated in 1986. The release notes the plant was first constructed in 1948 and saw upgrades in 1986, 2005, and 2018.

NTPC has previously asked residents to conserve power when the plant has failed in the past. But the release notes that power usage is down from peak highs during a cold snap last week.