DOE to complete Nov. 15 brownout probe soon

By Myrna M. Velasco – November 24, 2016, 10:01 PM

from Manila Bulletin

Department of Energy (DOE) secretary Alfonso G. Cusi said he will “cut fingers” if the parties involved in the November 15 massive brownouts in the Luzon grid will not stop on their “blame game” tactic as to the real cause of the power interruptions.

“There’s still finger-pointing. We will have to give it until November 30 to finish the investigation… we need time because the technical aspect of it is difficult to determine,” he told reporters.

The energy chief said the turn of events had gone “too complicated,” because no party would want to take the blame why the rolling brownouts happened.

When asked by the media what would he do if finger-pointing continues between and among all parties involved, Cusi said in jest “I’ll cut their fingers.”

The energy chief earlier formed an investigation committee to determine the triggers of last week’s Luzon-wide power outages. His order was issued November 18.

The probe body is chaired by Generoso M. Senal, officer-in-charge president of the National Transmission Corporation; and his vice chair is Assistant Secretary Gerardo D. Erguiza Jr. of the Department of Energy. The members of the committee are DOE Director Mylene C. Capongcol and TransCo Manager Bienvenido D. Valeros.

Reports previously indicated that a technical glitch traced to the San Jose substation of the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) had been pointed to as the cause of the brownouts.

At 7:31 p.m. on Tuesday (November 15), the scale of capacity loss in the system reached as high as 2,700 megawatts due to multiple trippings of power plants.

This then led to manual load dropping enforced by distribution utilities, hence, causing the rolling power outages that mainly tormented customers in the franchise area of the Manila Electric Company. (MMV)