NGCP blames ‘saboteurs’ for Mindanao blackout | Inquirer News
‘INTENTIONAL PILFERAGE’

NGCP blames ‘saboteurs’ for Mindanao blackout

/ 04:30 AM January 20, 2021

Power supply was cut off in provinces in northwestern Mindanao on Tuesday morning as transmission lines serving the area tripped following the toppling of a transmission tower in Lanao del Norte province by saboteurs the day before, according to National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP).In a statement, NGCP blamed saboteurs for putting down Tower No. 60 of the 138-kilovolt Balo-i-Aurora line in Barangay Poona, Tangcal town, Lanao del Norte.

This was done by “intentional pilferage” of parts of the tower. Among those removed were a stub angle, which forms part of the tower’s foundation, and bolts.

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“With the weakened foundation, perpetrators used ropes to topple the tower,” NGCP said.

It said efforts to restore transmission services were ongoing as it further investigated the cause of the blackout.

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With the tower down, the Balo-i-Aurora line tripped, cutting off electricity in the franchise areas of six electric cooperatives across the provinces of Zamboanga del Sur, Zamboanga del Norte, Misamis Oriental and Lanao del Norte.

Efforts to restore the Balo-i-Aurora line were barely under way when the 138-kV Agus 5-Aurora line, the second of two transmission lines serving northwestern Mindanao, also tripped on Tuesday morning. —REPORTS FROM RONNEL W. DOMINGO AND RICHEL V. UMEL INQ

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