If you’ve noticed some clocks running fast this week, you’re not in a time warp or going crazy.
The northwest has been taken off the usual BC Hydro electricity grid for 10 to 12 hours a day so maintenance can be done on the 500kV power lines from Prince George to Terrace.
While workers are doing this maintenance, the northwest gets its power from Rio Tinto Alcan, which runs on a faster frequency, says BC Hydro spokesperson Bob Gammer.
The frequency runs on 60 hertz at BC Hydro but the Rio Tinto frequency is 60.3 hertz, which is just enough to make electric clocks show a difference of 18 seconds per hour, he said.
“Yes, clocks are running a few minutes fast. It’s not every clock, it’s just those simple electric clocks that are plugged into the wall so they are running a few minutes fast per day while we have islanded the northwest from the rest of the B.C. grid,” said Gammer.
Maintenance goes on for 10 to 12 hours a day and when workers are done for the day, the regular lines are switched back on.
Simple clocks that are affected have to be reset back to the correct time while clocks that gather the time from other sources, such as cable and Internet, will be fine.
Workers finished up maintenance on Aug. 8, and the Northwest is now back on the normal BC Hydro grid.