By Myrna M. Velasco
The ash fall from the erupting Taal Volcano has also cut-off electricity service in areas being served by power utility giant Manila Electric Company (Meralco), primarily those in Batangas, Cavite and Laguna provinces.
As explained by Meralco spokesman Joe Zaldarriaga, “the ash fall created and spread from the volcanic eruption,” and when these particles came into contact with the Meralco wires, they caused tripping of these facilities.
Given this debacle on interrupted power services to consumers, Meralco assured the public that it will be deploying line crews “to respond to the circuits affected by the ash fall.”
Nevertheless, the utility firm qualified that it “will only restore power once it is assessed as safe for the community.”
As of this writing, Meralco indicated that it is working to restore power in ash fall-affected areas “as soon as possible.”
Based on information provided, some portions of Silang, San Pedro, Sta. Rosa, Cabuyao, and Calamba towns in Cavite and Laguna already have their electricity services restored since Monday.
Meralco similarly apprised the public that power cut-off will not be enforced in unaffected areas, junking reports being propagated on social media on this supposed scenario.
In Batangas, Meralco emphasized that considered hard-hit area is Talisay, hence, its power services had been cut off.
In Cavite, the towns marred with power interruptions had been Silang, Amadeo, Alfonso, Mendez-Nuñez, General Emilio Aguinaldo, Dasmariñas, Indang, Maragondon, Naic, Trece Martirez and Tagaytay City, but the utility firm emphasized that electricity service in some parts of Tagaytay had already been brought back.
“Meralco is currently on full alert and ready to respond to any power-related emergencies,” the utility firm stressed.
In a related development, the National Electrification Agency (NEA) reported on Tuesday that Batangas Electric Cooperative I (BATELEC I) had implemented “forced power shutdown” that affected some 12,850 households in the towns of Agoncillo and San Nicolas, in addition to the towns of Sta. Teresita, portions of Calaca and San Nicolas which lost power service because of ash fall incursion.
The electrification agency similarly noted that roughly 16,200 households are still plunged in darkness in the municipalities of Talisay and Laurel, due to the affected substation of the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines.
In other parts of Batangas, NEA noted that power service delivery had been normal – chiefly in Alitagtag, Balete, Cuenca, Lipa, Lobo, Mabini, Malvar, Mataas na Kahoy, Padre Garcia, Rosario, San Jose, San Juan, Taysan and Tingloy.