Puvirnituq generator breaks down; 2nd one in 7 months

In September, a generator burst into flames; cause of latest breakdown being investigated

One of Puvirnituq’s generators broke down in September 2023, as shown here. Another generator in the Nunavik community broke down on Wednesday, (Photo courtesy of Tommy Sallualuk)

By Cedric Gallant - Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

It could take six weeks to repair one of the four generators that provides power to Puvirnituq, following a breakdown earlier this week.

“There was a lot of fire coming out of the chimney,” Mayor Paulusi Angiyou told Nunatsiaq News about the breakdown that occurred Wednesday.

Hydro-Quebec spokesperson Lynn St-Laurent said the generator will be out of service for up to six weeks.

“Due to the supply of certain parts needed for the repair, it will take some time,” St-Laurent said.

Puvirnituq’s grid remains intact, she said, since the three other generators supply enough power to meet the Nunavik community’s demands.

However, she said, “we are watching the network closely, and we advise users to reduce their consumption of power preventively.”

St-Laurent said Hydro-Quebec staff is investigating the reason for the breakdown.

This is the second time in seven months that a generator has broken down in Puvirnituq. The first happened Sept. 22.

“Those generators have been working since the 1960s,” said Angiyou. “Because they are old, they are building new ones, and that should be done by the fall of the next year.”

He said to reduce their power use, people should avoid using electric heaters and shut off the lights when they leave a room.


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