Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro says conservation efforts made by their customers have helped the system avoid outages.

On Monday, the power utility asked people to scale back electricity usage during peak hours.

Dawn Dalley, vice-president of corporate relations at Nalcor Energy, said the extreme cold and some unavailable power generation has put a strain on the system.

"We've got some shortages in generation, which is why our buffer is not as big as it normally would be," she said.

Dalley said a unit in Bay d'Espoir was completely offline, and there are others that aren't operating at full capacity.

She said the decision to ask for conservation was precautionary.

"When we looked yesterday morning at the load forecast for the next three days, in combination with the weather forecast, we saw that we were going to be able to meet the loads that we saw in the system," Dalley said.

"But our margin — our buffer — would be a little tighter than we normally would have, so we felt that was important to discuss that with people and ask them for their help — in essence — in building a little bit more of a buffer."

Relaying more info post-Dark N.L.

Dalley said situations like this are not unusual at this time of year, but people aren't used to NL Hydro sharing that information.

"We're in a different world post-January … and people want more information, and we have no issues providing it," she said.

"As part of providing that information, though, everyone gets to see everything, and so they may see things that they didn't see before and they're not used to seeing."

NL Hydro is calling on customers to continue conservation measures over the next few days between the peak hours of 7 a.m. and 10 a.m., and 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.