An extensive project to make energy supplies more secure for Melksham residents has been completed by Southern Electric Power Distribution (SEPD).

Engineers have upgraded substations serving homes around Hazelwood Road and Falcon Way with new automated switching equipment. Similar works have also been completed in Frome.

In the event of a power cut, smaller groups of homes can now be isolated and the fault located more quickly. The switching equipment automatically re-routes supplies, helping to keep the lights on in the affected area, with just the minimum amount of power loss, while engineers work to correct the fault.

Around 4,200 homes and businesses in Melksham and Frome have benefited altogether.

Paul Gallacher, Operations manager at SEPD’s Melksham depot, said: “This high-tech equipment effectively allows us to split customers into smaller groups, so fewer of them are affected if a fault occurs. And if it happens, our central control room can get on the case within minutes, as supplies are re-routed from another part of the network.”

The work is part of an ongoing plan by SEPD to upgrade all its high voltage substations, helping to significantly cut the number of power cuts for customers. The works are part of a £330 million company-wide investment programme being implemented over the next four years.