Visayan Electric restores 80% of power service in Cebu

Published January 21, 2022, 4:08 PM

by Myrna M. Velasco

Visayan Electric Company, a subsidiary of Aboitiz Power Corporation, has now restored more that 80 percent of electricity services in its franchise area in Cebu province, including that of the capital city.

The utility firm said the complemented manpower and equipment made it possible for the re-energization activities in the typhoon-battered domains to top target this month although power restoration in the rest of the areas has yet to be fully accomplished.

Raul Lucero, president and chief operating officer of Visayan Electric, underscored that 80 percent of electricity supply across its service areas had been brought back by noon of Friday, Jan. 21 covered around 394,400 customers out of the 474,182 subscribers affected.

He said that energy demand in Visayan Electric’s franchise area already reached 345.3 megawatts, accounting for 88-percent vis-à-vis the pre-Odette power consumption of 495MW being logged by the power firm.

Given that pace of progress, Lucero noted “it is encouraging to see that power is flowing back into the cities and municipalities that we serve.” The service domains of Visayan Electric include the cities of Cebu, Mandaue, Naga and Talisay; as well as the towns of Consolacion, Liloan, Minglanilla and San Fernando.

Onward, the power company indicated that it will be “turning 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.”

Lucero emphasized “we have been getting more help as we progress in our restoration efforts.” He noted of the recent team reinforcement of 21 linemen from MORE Electric and Power Corporation, a distribution utility serving Iloilo City.

The Visayan Electric executive added “we are also getting 26 additional people from Luzon who are scheduled to arrive Friday this week,” as he emphasized that the 86 personnel deployed by Manila Electric Company (Meralco) will already be leaving Cebu on Saturday (January 22) – with 33 of them up for re-deployment in Surigao and Siargao; while 53 will be returning to Manila.

“Some linemen from other parts of the country are heading 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,” the power firm said.

On required equipment for restoration works, Visayan Electric conveyed that it procured nine bucket trucks as addition to its fleet of specialized equipment – and additional five are up for purchase. On top of that, the company will be tapping another local engineering contractor for civil works, particularly for pole digging.

In line with the next phase of restoration activities that will target the outskirts of the city, Lucero had advanced the utility firm’s plea to neighborhoods “for their cooperation in bringing equipment to areas not accessible by big trucks.”

He stressed “our linemen continue to work 24/7 to re-energize all cities and municipalities within our franchise area, and so we continue to ask for the public’s patience as we assure them that they have not been abandoned or forgotten.”