NGCP clears ash from transmission facilities

by Ana-Liza S. Macatangay

NAGA CITY – The ash fall brought by the intermittent lava spews coming from Mount Mayon did not only affect the livestock and most of the population within its vicinity but also the transmission lines of the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) which are vital in ensuring the effective conveyance of electricity from its source to every household.

In an interview, Nilda Somera, NGCP regional communication and public affairs officer stated that on the onset of the Mayon’s erratic episodes, they have already alerted their linemen to monitor their facilities particularly in areas where there are reported heavy ash fall occurrence.

“We have already anticipated that most of our transmission lines, particularly those located in Ligao and Guinobatan area will be affected by the heavy ash fall. True enough, upon the conduct of thermal scanning, we found out that most of the porcelain insulators are already wrapped up with thick ash fall,” Somera confirmed.

Forty (40) linemen were immediately dispatched in barangays Batang, Layon and Paulog, all in the municipality of Ligao to manually remove the ashes that have accumulated in the insulators and to clear 10 high-voltage direct current (HVDC) electric power transmission towers.

HVDC is also coined as the “power super highway” or an electrical super highway.

“Each porcelain insulator needs to be cleaned out to prevent induction or tripping of lines. We have 34 pieces of horizontal insulators and 24 vertical insulators which need to be cleaned up manually with rugs and brush. After here, our team will clear the Naga –Daraga 230 KV line.”

To ensure that all transmission facilities will be attended in case Mayon Volcano continue to discharge plumes, Somera added that they have already requested for manpower augmentation from other NGCP office in the South Luzon area. (LSMacatangay-PIAV/Camarines Sur)