NGCP alarmed by communities built beneath power-transmission lines

by Lenie LecturaAugust 26, 2016

from business Mirror

THE National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP) reiterated on Friday its call to respect transmission-line safety clearances.

This, after a fire broke out late last month at a highly populated area 300 meters away from NGCP’s Quezon Substation at Baesa, Quezon City.

The fire started from an upholstery shop under the Quezon–San Jose 230-kiloVolt backbone line, between Towers 58 and 59, and adjacent Quezon–San Rafael 230-kV  backbone line, between Towers 508 and 509.

The proximity of the fire to the two transmission lines puts NGCP’s operations at risk, as the heavy smoke of the fire could have tripped the transmission lines serving Metro Manila and the surrounding provinces.

Both lines carry a combined capacity of 1,264 megawatts, with Quezon–San Jose 230-kV lines 1 and 2 having 618-MW load each, and Quezon–San Rafael 230 kV with 28-MW load.

“Heavy smoke underneath high-voltage transmission lines can cause interruption of transmission services. Since these lines are critical to delivering power to Metro Manila, we could have suffered through a Metro-wide power interruption had the fire not been abated quickly,” NGCP stated. The fire was declared under control two-and-a-half hours after it broke out.

The company also took the opportunity to reiterate the effect of right-of-way (ROW) violations, specifically squatting underneath transmission facilities, on the safety and security of the host communities, and the smooth delivery of electricity.

“Living underneath our lines is not only unsafe, but it poses a real threat to the security and reliability of the grid. Breaching our ROW clearances can cause line tripping and possible grid collapse.

“These homes and structures should never have been built so close to, or directly underneath our lines, given the inherent danger of the area, and the critical nature of these facilities in the delivery of power to the different parts of the country,” NGCP said in a statement.

NGCP is a privately owned corporation in charge of operating, maintaining and developing the country’s power grid. It transmits high-voltage electricity through “power superhighways” that include the interconnected system of transmission lines, towers, substations and related assets.

The consortium, which holds the 25-year concession contract  to operate the country’s power-transmission network, is comprised of Monte Oro Grid Resources Corp., led by Henry Sy Jr.; Calaca High Power Corp., led by Robert Coyiuto  Jr.; and the State Grid Corp. of China as technical partner.