‘Feels like Christmas morning’: Community rallies to help mobile home tenants left without electricity

'Feels like Christmas morning': Community rallies to help mobile home tenants left without electricity

Several homes at Sherwood Estates Mobile Home Park had their power restored Tuesday after tenants went more than a week without heat, hot water and limited food options.

CHEK News reported on April 15 that at least 10 homes at the Sooke mobile home park went without power for over a week, following rain damage. Residents say they were forced to throw out food, sleep without heat, and be unable to take hot showers.

Michelle McKay says she had to skip work to take care of her husband on dialysis.

“No words from the landlord at all, [nobody’s] given us updates or anything,” said the tenant on Apr 15.

Following the story, Rick Gordon of Sherwood Estates told CHEK News that the park was waiting on a specific part to install a new generator and reconnect to BC Hydro.

“A short-term fix using a smaller breaker was not approved by the provincial energy inspector,” he said in an email on April 15. “Accordingly, the only short-term remedy is to secure an oversized generator and hook up the affected homes.”

READ MORE: ‘They might have some fatalities’: Mobile home tenants in Sooke without power for a week

On Tuesday, the lights turned back on.

Residents found workers installing four large propane tanks to a sitting generator, which is able to power large appliances with ovens and refrigerators. The order came from park management and was overseen by BC Hydro workers.

“BC Hydro attended the site yesterday to remove meters and disconnect service to ensure the owner’s generator would operate independently from BC Hydro’s system. We are actively working with the owner and their consultant on a permanent solution,” said Karla Louwers, BC Hydro Public Affairs Officer.

“It feels like Christmas morning this morning,” said Dallas McKay.

The McKays say that support has been pouring in from across the country, including friends, family, and even strangers. Local support group, Sooke Embrace, helped gather supplies such as gift cards, coffee and donuts and checked in with residents over the weekend.

“People have been so helpful, it’s great,” said resident Mike Bidwell.

Home Hardware tells CHEK News that it donated multiple cans of propane to power its own generators and is offering discounted prices on any supplies residents may need until power is fully restored.

“We always like to step up. The community of Sooke supports the store and we want to support them as well,” said Dave Cowan, assistant manager.

The Sooke Shelter and District of Sooke also tended to residents.

“The outreach and support we are seeing is a testament to their kindness, compassion and care for each other. Our team will stay connected to provide further assistance where we can. We thank the community for all they have done and continue to do in looking out for one another,” said Christina Moog, Communications Coordinator for the District of Sooke.

Park management has not said when power will reconnect to BC Hydro. Previously, residents were told it may take up to three weeks to reconnect, but they are staying optimistic thanks to community support.

“Incurring some of the costs that we’ve gone through is going to be a struggle in the next month or two. We’re still just so happy to have power,” said Michelle.

Oli HerreraOli Herrera

Recent Stories

Send us your news tips and videos!