Meralco: Expect rotating brownouts this weekend

from a report by Jacque Manabat, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 18 2014 06:25 PM | Updated as of Jul 19 2014 07:54 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Electricity is expected to be restored in Metro Manila by 10 p.m. Friday, but rotating brownouts will continue this weekend.

This is because the power supply has yet to normalize after some power plants in southern Luzon were affected by typhoon "Glenda."

Several areas in Manila, Quezon City, Bulacan, Cavite, Las Pinas, Batangas and Laguna experienced 5 to 6-hour rotating brownouts on Friday.

As of 1 p.m. on Friday, only 10 percent of Meralco customers in Metro Manila were still without power, mostly in Paranaque and Las Pinas.

As of 3 p.m., nearly all of Quezon province still had no power, followed by Batangas (65.12 percent without power), Cavite (58.39%), Laguna (50.90%), Rizal (20.36%) and Bulacan (1.4%). Power has been fully restored in Pampanga.

"We ensure na kapag buo na yung supply requirement ng Meralco, maibibgay sa amin ng planta, we ensure we'll have more power by 10 p.m. Pero dahil kulang pa ang suplay, we have to resort to rotating brownout. Liliit ang kakulangan at iigsi lang ang interruption bukas," Ronnie Aperocho, Meralco networks head, said.

Several plants are still unable to supply power due to damage sustained during the typhoon, such as San Lorenzo and Santa Rita in Batangas. A unit of Sual power plant in Pangasinan also bogged down.

The Department of Energy expects these affected power plants to slowly go back online in the next few days.

However, for the power supply to normalize, the lines from the plant to the distributors should also be fixed.

"Kami po ay patuloy na humihingi ng paumanhin, nararanasan talaga natin ang rotating brownouts. Grabe po ang tinamong pinsala ng planta at linya kaya patuloy ang rotating brownout... Pag naging successful po tomorrow evening or Sunday, maiaayos natin," Mylene Capungcol, director of the DOE's Electric Power Industry Management Bureau.

"Ang dahilan ng pagbagal ng restoration namin, bago itayo ang mga poste na natumba, we have to clear yung mga puno na nakatumba... It's basically on the clearing process kaya nagkakaroon ng hirap sa restoration... we are on track," Aperocho said.

Since there is less demand for electricity during the weekend, the DOE expects shorter brownouts.

The DOE expects the supply of power to normalize next week.