Energy dept moves to restore power in areas pounded by 'Nina'

MANILA--The Department of Energy (DOE) has moved to restore power in Typhoon Nina-hit areas Monday.

Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi said in a statement that he has instructed concerned units and agencies to immediately restore power facilities and supply to communities struck by the weather disturbance, specifically in the Southern Luzon and Bicol regions.

He said his department has deployed personnel on the ground to assess the damage and has activated Task Force Kapatid to assist affected distribution utilities in repairing assets.

According to the department, Energy Undersecretary William Fuentebella has set the deadlines for the assessment of the energy facilities and coordinated rehabilitation efforts after visiting the National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP) and the National Electrification Administration (NEA).

“The DOE and its partners in the energy sector will deploy restoration teams for the speedy recovery of power to the affected towns and provinces,” Fuentebella said.

He said the NGCP will restore power immediately once the the distribution lines are ready.

Citing reports from the NGCP, the department said 11 69-kilovolt lines were downed by the typhoon, including the Daraga substation located in Albay, affecting Batangas, Quezon, Camarines Sur, Camarines Norte, Albay and Sorsogon.

NEA meanwhile committed to provide more details by 8 a.m. Tuesday.

Cusi meanwhile urged the public to ensure the safety of their communities as the department and volunteers from private distribution utilities work to restore power.

"We will need everybody's cooperation to open the roads and clear the areas for our linemen to have access to the damaged lines and energy facilities. We are committed to restore power immediately," he said. (PNA)