Power outage in North Metro fouls up traffic, railway ops

Power outage in North Metro fouls up traffic, railway ops
By Riza T. Olchondra, Abigail L. Ho
Last updated 08:31am (Mla time) 06/27/2007

SEVERAL areas in Metro Manila and in nearby provinces experienced power outages Tuesday when lightning struck the 230-kilovolt (kV) San Jose-Balintawak line of the National Transmission Corp., cutting the power supply from four Luzon generation facilities.


In a statement, Transco said the tripping of the San Jose-Balintawak line also caused the Hermosa-Mexico and Cabanatuan-Mexico lines to trip.


The tripping of the lines later affected the power supply generated by the Ilijan gas-fired, Calaca coal-fired, Malaya thermal and Limay combined-cycle power plants operated by the National Power Corp.


Brownouts were felt at around 2 p.m. in parts of Cavite, Los Baños and Biñan in Laguna, Bulacan and Tayabas, Quezon.


Customers of the Manila Electric Co. in the northern part of Metro Manila, including Quezon City, Navotas, Caloocan, Malabon and Valenzuela were also affected.


Transco was able to restore power to the San Jose-Balintawak, Hermosa-Mexico and Cabanatuan-Mexico lines at around 3:30 p.m.


Some 45,000 commuters of the Light Rail Transit Lines 1 and 2 and Metro Rail Transit were stranded for over an hour as the trains stopped operating due to outage.


LRT Authority public relations officer Jinky Jorgio said in a text message that Line 1, which runs from Monumento to Baclaran and vice versa, resumed normal operations at around 2:30 p.m. Line 2 ( from Recto to Santolan), on the other hand, started operating at around 3 p.m.


The MRT, meanwhile, was not as badly affected. Operations from the North Avenue station to Shaw Boulevard were stalled for a full hour. But operations from Shaw to Taft Avenue were unaffected throughout the power outage.


MRT general manager Roberto Lastimoso said it was fortunate that the disruption of operations did not occur during rush hour.


The LRT Line 1 ferries 30,000 to 35,000 passengers hourly at peak hours compared to 10,000 to 15,000 passengers for Line 2 and 40,000 passengers for the MRT.


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