More Electric and Power Corp. on Tuesday described the power distribution system in Iloilo City which it took over from Panay Electric Co. (PECO) as rotting, in state of disrepair, a ticking time bomb.
Roel Castro, President of More Electric and Power Corp. (MORE Power) said in a statement the current state of the distribution system prompted the new power distributor to implement maintenance works on substations, transformers, and distributions in the past three months, causing brownouts around the city.
Castro said in a statement it was the required maintenance works that caused the longest brownout was in Jaro district on May 17 after MORE Power conducted preventive maintenance work on Jaro substation.
He said the five Iloilo City power substations were integral part of the power distribution system as they reduce voltage to a level suitable for local distribution. Apart from stabilizing the system, substations also protect the consumers from sudden drops or surges of electricity.
Castro said their inspections on the substations, transformers, and cables in Iloilo City revealed alarming conditions of the distribution system.
He said analysis of the substations indicated high levels of dissolved gas due to degradation of oil and paper insulation.
“If we liken it to a person who underwent blood analysis, the oil in the substations have high cholesterol, uric acid, and triglycerides. The substations are very sick because there are gases that are over 100 times over the limit. I am sorry to be frank but bulok (rotten) ang sistema that we took over,” Castro said.
Castro said four of the five substations are over 90 percent loaded against the normal load of 70 to 80 percent.
In its initial investigation via thermal scanning, MORE Power and engineering consultant Miescor found out that there are over 900 connection points or hotspots, and these include 144 transformers, powerlines and other components of the system.
Castro said they have replaced and upgraded 96 transformers and erected 98 new concrete poles and replaced almost 11,000 new electric meters since they took over from PECO in February.
MORE Power counted 10 overloaded transformers that exploded in the past three months, he said.