BLACKCURRENT GIVES AVOCET TRUST A LIGHT BULB MOMENT!
Avocet Trust is a charity which owns over 40 houses in and around the Hull area providing
homes and support for vulnerable adults with varying needs including learning disabilities
and some related physical disabilities.
However, one of these homes is situated in an isolated rural area and, although there
was an electrical substation nearby, the home experienced regular power cuts on average
about twice a week which was extremely disturbing to both residents and the staff
that care for them.
Initially it was thought that the cause of the power cuts was down to excessive usage but
this turned out not to be the case. Avocet’s maintenance team scratched their heads
to find a cause and, after trying a number of different none of which seemed to cure
the problem , resigned themselves to the situation.
Then in December 2012, Mark Rogers, one of Avocet’s administrators attended a care
home suppliers conference where he happened to see a demonstration of BlackCurrent,
a new emergency power back up system that was being launched to the care home industry. This
was a light bulb moment for Mark who realised that this could be the solution to
the problem of the multi power cuts the home was experiencing.
He explained his problem to Lancashire businessman and battery expert Mark Rigby,
whose company UK Powertech Ltd developed the BlackCurrent and asked if this could
answer the Avocet’s problem.
Mark Rigby explained,
“ The BlackCurrent units are designed for emergency power
storage to be used to maintain operation of critical services
during a power cut. These units can either be plug and play
to back up either individual or multiple pieces of equipment
or they can be hard wired into an electrical system to create
an emergency power supply.The larger the unit the more
equipment it can operate at higher power levels. We suggested
that our BlackCurrent 600 would be ideal for the needs of the
home to keep basic functions such as lighting and heating
controls which were his main concern so we arranged for a site
visit to assess where to install the unit. ”
Following a site visit it was agreed that the BlackCurrent 600, hard wired into the
mains, would be the ideal solution for Avocet’s needs and Abbey Electrical Services
(Hull) were briefed to carry out the work.
“This was a simple and very easy job. We removed the circuits from the main electrical
distribution point and fitted their own separate control unit. This consumer unit
was then connected directly to the BlackCurrent which in turn was connected to the
mains circuit", explained Chris McConaghy from Abbey Electrical Services. "It was
a relatively simple job that took around 3-4 hours to create the new circuit".
Under normal mains supply the circuits are fed directly from the mains, but in the
event of a power failure the BlackCurrent automatically detects the failure and seamlessly
supplies maintains the power supply without disruption to the lighting or heating.
“Since we installed the BlackCurrent it’s made our residents and our staff feel far
more secure knowing that we now have the power back-up to keep everyone safe and
comfortable" commented Mark Rogers, "It’s a great relief for everyone involved and
we believe that all care homes should fitted with a BlackCurrent as standard,”
There are three sizes of BlackCurrent units -- 300, 600 or 2000 - and each of these
can be either plugged into a socket or hardwired to the mains where they draw electricity
that is stored in gel batteries until such time as power cut occur. When hard
wired into the mains it will seamlessly take over the electrical load which, of course,
will depend on the size of the unit -- for example the 300 will run lights, a TV
and the electrical components of a gas central heating boiler for up to about 2 hours
which is the average length of a power cut. The larger size will be able to handle
bigger equipment depending on the power load.
For care homes where continuous power for medical equipment can be critical the BlackCurrent
300 plug and play unit is ideal -- it’s portable and can be wheeled to where it’s
needed which is ideal for bedside use.
The BlackCurrent is a flexible, adaptable and vital piece of equipment for homes,
offices, retailers, catering establishments and medical use to ensure that energy
is available continuously.