Nova Scotia

Some Sydney apartment building tenants may be without power for almost 3 weeks

Most of an apartment building in Sydney, N.S., has been without power for a week and a half. The power went out at Cabot House on July 11 and may not be fully restored until July 31.

Power went out at Cabot House on July 11 and may not be fully restored until July 31

Cabot House in Sydney, N.S., has 18 floors. (Brent Kelloway/CBC)

Most of an apartment building in Sydney, N.S., has been without power for a week and a half.

The power went out at Cabot House on July 11.

"People have moved out of the building and are staying with family or friends until they got some word about what the company may do to help them meet their needs," said tenant Ian McNeil.

He said he feels badly for residents who are seniors or are living with children.

"I think of the senior citizen who had a CPAP machine and told me, 'Look, I haven't slept in three days. I have to move into a hotel room so that I can get a good night's sleep again,'" said McNeil.

He said they received a notice to not use propane or candles during the outage. Since the hot water runs on propane, that means they also do not have access to that.

Letter to residents

The property owner, Killam Apartment REIT, sent a letter to residents that said an electrical engineer and electricians are investigating.

There is power on the first floor of the building, which is a commercial space. This is being run from a generator, while the elevator and hallway lights are being run from a reserve generator.

The letter from Killam says power should be restored to floors 10 to 18 by the end of this week, while floors three to nine should be ready by the end of the month. It also says they are working with insurers regarding costs related to spoiled food and those who had to find alternate accommodations.

Tenant Muhammad Fahad Ehson has a two-and-a half-year-old son. He said it is getting very difficult entertaining him because he has to take him to the park a few times a day to stay out of the hot apartment.

Resident worried about his young son

Ehson said they had to throw out around $200 worth of groceries because of the outage.

"After a couple of days, all of that was so rotten, I had to throw it out," he said.

Ehson said he's most worried about his son.

"My son is the one most affected by the situation for him with no fresh food initially," said Ehson.

Service Nova Scotia is in charge of residential tenancies. In an email, they said no complaints have been made about Cabot House.

Killam did not respond to a request from CBC News for comment.

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With files from Mainstreet Cape Breton

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