Thursday, November 5, 2015

NGCP places Mindanao on ‘red alert’

The National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP) have placed the entire island of Mindanao on “red alert” on Wednesday (Nov. 4) as it announced a power deficiency of 40 megawatts and alleged escalation of bombing threats on transmission lines.

“With the return of the generating facilities of STEAG Power in Misamis Oriental and Mt. Apo in Davao, the power deficiency, as of Nov. 3, is pegged at 40MW, placing the Mindanao Grid on red alert,” NGCP said in a statement.

Elizabeth Ladaga, head of the NGCP’s corporate communication department, said the duration of the power interruptions experienced by end-consumers in some parts of Mindanao would vary, depending on their respective distribution utilities.

Ladaga blamed the sporadic bombing of various power line towers in Lanao Del Sur, which has been the main cause of power interruptions in some areas in Mindanao.

The NGCP has already recorded a total of seven bombings of various power transmission lines in Mindanao from January to October this year, Ladaga said.

Ladaga said the latest was the toppling down of two power transmission towers in Marawi City on Oct. 29, which resulted in the power deficiency of 150 megawatts in the Mindanao Grid supplied by Agus 1 and Agus 2 Hydropower plants in Lanao Del Sur.

The NGCP has expressed concerns, stating that the attacks seems to have escalated following the bombing of Tower 21 and the discovery of undetonated bombs planted in various power transmission lines in Mindanao.

Ladaga said that the NGCP had issued an appeal to the public to help monitor the safety of the towers so that transmission services remained uninterrupted.

She said that the NGCP was fully cooperating with law enforcement agencies as they investigated the incident while restoration efforts began as soon as local law enforcement agencies declared that the area was safe.

Ladaga said that the NGCP had also appealed to the local government units and the Philippine Army for assistance in resolving escalating security and right-of-way issues involving power transmission lines in Mindanao. (PNA)

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