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May 18, 2018

Nepra seeks explanation for widespread power outage

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May 18, 2018

ISLAMABAD: The National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) has taken a serious notice of the hours-long power outage in the KP and Punjab provinces after the National Transmission of Dispatch Company’s (NTDC) northern system tripped on 16th May 2018. The regulator has directed the NTDC to submit a detailed report on the issue.

On Wednesday, almost half of the country witnessed an almost eight-hour power outage, as a major power breakdown in the country’s transmission system occurred in the morning leaving Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) and Northern Areas, without power for almost the whole day.

In its statement, Nepra said the power breakdown resulted in a complete blackout in the north (i.e. from Guddu – Peshawar) leaving the Punjab and the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa without electricity. It is pertinent to mention here that earlier on May 1, 2018, the tripping of NTDC’s 220 KV transmission lines affected the Chashma nuclear power plant (units 1-4) causing a generation loss of around 2,100 MW. The two consecutive power breakdowns within a short span, have once again exposed the fragile stability and reliability of the system, showing the poor state of affairs on the part of NTDC.

The poor performance of the NTDC’s transmission network has been seriously viewed by the authority and it has been directed to immediately provide a detailed report regarding the unforeseen circumstances which caused the widespread power breakdown.

On Wednesday, explaining the outage, the Power division had said both the 500KV Guddu-Rahim Yar Khan and 500KV Guddu-DG Khan transmission lines tripped at 09:28am. As a result, the load increased on 500KV Guddu-Muzaffargarh transmission line which also tripped. Meanwhile, some other power stations including four units of the Chashma Nuclear Power Plant, also tripped which suspended power to the whole of the northern part from Guddu to Peshawar.

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