Lightning causes 6-hour blackout

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Monday, May 12, 2014


LIGHTNING that bogged down some lightning arresters of the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) caused the six-hour blackout in almost all areas in Negros Occidental Saturday night.

The power interruption began around 10:25 p.m. Power supply was totally restored in all affected areas at 4 a.m. Sunday.

Sulpicio Lagarde Jr., general manager of Central Negros Electric Cooperative (Ceneco), said their two sub-stations were down that night.

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He said the blackout was also experienced by consumers of VMC Rural Electric Service Cooperative Inc. (Vresco) in the north and half of the service areas of Negros Occidental Electric Cooperative (Noceco) in the south.

Electricity in areas covered by Line 1 was back at midnight while in areas covered by Line 2 at about 4 a.m. Sunday, Lagarde said.

"The problem was not the power supply but the distribution of (NGCP)," he pointed.

Lagarde said that another blackout happened around 7 a.m. Sunday due to the insulator failure of NGCP.

The power interruption didn't take long however, he said.

Power requirement

Meanwhile, Lagarde said the Department of Energy (DOE) updated Ceneco officials of their projected power requirement in the Visayas for 2020.

Investors are coming in to put up renewable energy sources, he said.

However, Lagarde said that businessmen want a reliable 24-hour power supply, and solar, mini hydro and wind power cannot be relied on to provide power round-the-clock.

He added that Ceneco is also assured of power supply and by June this year, Ceneco could have already signed a power sales contract with Energy Development Corp. from its geothermal power plant in Nasulo, Negros Oriental.

Ceneco has also signed a contract for a 30-megawatt power supply from Palm Concepcion's Coal Plant in Iloilo starting 2016.

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on May 12, 2014.

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