Philippines — The National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) Tuesday said that the power outage that hit some parts of Metro Manila and Luzon over the weekend was not due to a technical problem on its part.
Moreover, the NGCP, which operates the countrys national transmission network, said that the isolated grid disturbance should not be taken as a portent of any major power outage or running brownouts this summer, assuring that it is on top of the situation in swiftly addressing isolated cases of disturbances to the country’s transmission network.
According to NGCP spokesperson Cynthia Perez Alabanza, the tripping of the 500-kilovolt San Jose-San Manuel transmission line last Saturday was caused by a grassfire that started between Towers 196 and 197 of the line in Barangay Sumacab in Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija.
The grassfire that led to the tripping of the transmission line necessitated the shutdown of three of NGCPs four transformer units at the San Jose Substation in Bulacan, which then resulted to brownouts in some parts of Metro Manila and nearby provinces.
The cause is clearly not a transmission problem or technical constraint on the part of the NGCP but a physical fault which is beyond our control, Alabanza said.
This is an isolated incident that could have been avoided if we can all work together in helping safeguard our transmission lines, she added.
Alabanza likened the incident with the transmission lines last Saturday to a highway which encountered a roadblock because of an unfortunate traffic accident.
The accident happened because of human error even though the highway was smooth and had no potholes to speak of. Just like the highway, our transmission grid has no technical constraints to speak of and remains fully capable of delivering power to its customers, Alabanza explained.
Accidents like grassfires, the spokesperson emphasized, are beyond the NGCPs control.
NGCP President and CEO Henry Sy Jr. is appealing to communities hosting transmission facilities across the country to be more vigilant in guarding and protecting high-voltage transmission lines against grassfires, especially during the summer season, she said.
Despite all this, Alabanza assured power consumers that the NGCP is on top of the situation and fully prepared for any contingencies.