Power restored in Metro Cebu areas ravaged by ‘Odette’

CEBU CITY – AboitizPower subsidiary Visayan Electric Co. (Veco) has further intensified its power restoration work in Metro Cebu after it breached its 80-percent reenergization target, with additional manpower and equipment pouring in.

Veco president and chief operating officer Raul Lucero said  they have restored power supply to at least 80% of customers within its franchise area. As of noon Friday, it has re-electrified 394,400 out of its 474,182 affected customers.

“We recorded energy demand at 345.3 MW, which is 88% of the pre-“Odette” power consumption of 495 MW. It is encouraging to see that power is flowing back into the cities and municipalities we serve,” Lucero said in a statement.

Veco, he said, now turns its attention to address pockets within the city that still do not have power, and to expand repair work toward the outskirts of its franchise.

“We have been getting more help as we progress in our restoration efforts. Twenty linemen from MORE Power, Iloilo City’s electric distribution utility, arrived in Cebu on Monday evening. We are also getting 26 additional people from Luzon who are scheduled to arrive Friday this week,” Lucero said.

All 86 personnel from the Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) will be leaving Cebu starting January 22.

About 33 of them will go to Surigao and Siargao while the rest will return to Manila after helping in the power restoration works.

Lucero said some linemen from other parts of the country are will shortly head back to their original base of operations while others are heading out to places like Surigao to continue their power restoration efforts with other electric cooperatives that badly need help.

Earlier, Veco bought nine bucket trucks to add to its fleet of specialized equipment. It now plans to acquire five more units. The company official said they will also get another local engineering contractor for civil works, particularly for pole digging.

The company’s franchise area spans 674 square kilometers or six% larger than Metro Manila. (PNA)