More than 15,000 Taupō locals without power

More than 15,000 Taupō residents are without power after a huge outage on Monday morning.

Transpower suffered a fault at its Wairakei substation at 8:40am, cutting off electricity to the entire Unison network in the area.

That's about 16,000 customers across the wider Taupō region, NZME reports. Much of the central urban area is completely without power.

Unison has apologised for the outage on its Facebook page, blaming a malfunctioning switchboard.

Transpower staff are investigating the issue and working to determine when Taupō households can expect to be reconnected to the power network.

Unison's website estimates that power will be restored to the region by about 3pm.

Locals affected are advised to keep an eye out for Facebook updates from both Transpower and Unison.

Taupō residents have remarked that an outage on a similar scale happened almost exactly a year ago, with some wondering if it's a planned annual event.