2-hour power cuts hit metro Cebu-A A +A
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
CEBU CITY -- Power interruptions, some lasting nearly two hours, disrupted work in various parts of Metro Cebu Tuesday, after supply from power plants in Toledo and Naga to a major transmission line was cut off.
The National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) is expected to investigate what caused the interruption, said energy officials.
Department of Energy (DOE) Visayas Director Antonio Labios said the NGCP transmission line from Naga-Sigpit to Toledo City tripped off at 2:30 a.m.
This meant some 214 megawatts typically provided by two plants of the Cebu Energy Development Corp. (CEDC) and the Cebu Thermal Power Plant in Naga were unavailable.
As of Tuesday night, the CEDC power plants were able to “cut in” the transmission line but with only a minimal load, said communications officer Ethel Natera of the Visayan Electric Company Inc.
“They expected full load at 11 p.m. (Tuesday),” she said.
The distributor, which serves over 305,000 customers in Metro Cebu, adapted to the power interruption by implementing two-hour rotation brownouts in its franchise areas from Liloan town in the north to San Fernando town in the south.
CEDC communications officer Mae Melchor said that per reports, the NGCP line was restored at 7:30 a.m. Tuesday.
CEDC’s two units were expected to be back online within the day, she added.
While the deficiency placed the power situation under “red alert” status, Labios said that it isn’t a cause for alarm.
“Red alert only means there is a deficiency in power reserve. This is not the same as in military situations,” he said.
In a separate statement Tuesday, Natera said Veco is “closely coordinating with CEDC on the status of their plants and expected restoration time.”
Power supply from the Toledo city-based plants was expected to be delivered Tuesday night.
Last month, Energy Secretary Rene Almendras said the problem of brownouts will be solved by next year, once the new coal-fired power plants of CEDC and Korean Electric Company-SPC Power Corporation (Kepco-SPC) joint venture in Naga are fully operational.
With the new power plants in Toledo City and Naga, Cebu will have a total of 458 mw, more than enough to cover the additional demand of 399 mw for the Cebu-Negros-Panay grid.
As of Tuesday, however, the NGCP website showed what it transmitted fell 325 mw short of the peak demand.
Melchor of CEDC said they began to increase power, and had about megawatts by 2 p.m.
As of 6:15 p.m. Tuesday, Natera said only Unit 1 of CEDC’s power plants was generating power. Unit 2 was expected to cut in and start delivering power at 8:30 p.m. (BAP/EOB/Sun.Star Cebu)
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 06, 2010.