Availability of materials a challenge, says CUC

The availability of materials needed to restore power and water on Saipan and Tinian after Super Typhoon Yutu’s destruction has been a challenge to the Commonwealth Utilities Corp., according to CUC executive director Gary P. Camacho.

Camacho said that materials have become a big issue for many utility agencies because of the large fires in California, a hurricane in Mexico Beach in Florida, and another hurricane in North Carolina.

“That’s my understanding, that was the large fire ever recorded in history in the U.S.,” said Camacho in an interview last Wednesday. “Fortunately, it is my understanding that materials have been identified for our needs and should be and are being processed for delivery.”

He said a lot of utility workers are working on the south side of Saipan—the area worst hit by Yutu.

“We got As Lito Road all the way down to near Guangdong, if not further. Poles have been erected all the way on Beach Road to San Antonio,” he said.

Camacho said a group is focused on building the power primary lines system to energize some of the establishments in those areas.

He said they are ready for more materials to come in as flights will be coming in later this week with power poles.

“The challenge is just to continue with the effort. I’m very proud of everybody, both folks from off-island and CUC, for the commitment that they have on a daily basis—6am to 7pm everyday, sometimes to 9pm to continue to work and continue to build out as quickly as we can for the folks that don’t have power,” Camacho said.

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a veteran journalist who has covered all news beats in the CNMI. Born in Lilo-an, Cebu City in the Philippines, De la Torre graduated from the University of Santo Tomas with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. He is a recipient of many commendations and awards, including the CNMI Judiciary’s prestigious Justice Award for his over 10 years of reporting on the judiciary’s proceedings and decisions. Contact him at ferdie_delatorre@saipantribune.com

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