The Public Utilities Regulatory Commission has summoned the Ghana Grid Company and the Volta River Authority to an emergency meeting to discuss the erratic power supply in the country.
The decision to meet the power producer and distributors follows the increasing spate of nationwide blackouts.
Nana Yaa Jantuah, the Head of Public Affairs of the PURC told the Daily Graphic in an interview that officials of the commission would seek to make proposals to government on the need to invest in GRIDCo.
That, according to her to ensure the increasing failure in the company’s power generating equipment.
“The total blackout as a result of the system failure calls for an immediate strategy towards rescuing the power distributor,” she said.
The entire country was plunged into total darkness last night as a result of a broken cable that fell on power generators at the Akosombo Switchyard of the Volta River Authority.
Information gathered by the Daily Graphic indicated that the VRA has lost a generator to the incident.
The generator has since been isolated as officials of the Ghana Grid Company (GRIDCo) work tirelessly to restore it.
The cable in question serves as a shield for conductors carrying power in the event that lightning strikes.
The fault being close to the power generating units resulted in outage of all the generators at the Akosombo Generating Station and the resultant loss in power in parts of the country.
Mr Eric Asare, the Director of System Operations at the Ghana Grid Company (GRIDCo) told the Daily Graphic in an interview that with the Akosombo lines out, the remaining power stations including Takoradi could not sustain the load.
“Akosombo being the biggest generating station, once it goes off, the rest could not sustain themselves.”
He said the cable which was one of the six lines coming from the power generating station got broken and fell on the part of a conductor that carries power.
He said to restore power supply, the snapped cable was cleared but it caused considerable damage to auxiliary equipment at the station.
The blackout which occurred at about 7pm on Sunday clothed seven regions in total darkness.
By 9am Monday Morning, several areas were without electricity but Mr Asare noted that GRIDCo had worked hard to restore power to almost every part of the country.
He said in addition to the generator which was being worked on the Takoradi substation was yet to be restored.
“All this has culminated in a short fall in power generated for our customers. We therefore asked the ECG to take off some areas in order not to stress the system.
He, however, gave the assurance that by latest by 2pm today (Monday) the situation would be restored to normal.
Mr Asare stated that even though obsolete equipment which causes the power outages were being replaced, the difficulty was that the same equipment was supplying power to the country.
“It is not as fast because, it is not like a contractor doing a completely new installation, these substations are also delivering power, so we have a limitation regarding how many we can take out of service at a time for maintenance work,” he stated.
He gave the assurance that the company would continue with consistent maintenance to ensure the blackouts were minimised.
Across the country, some Ghanaians took to social networks to vent their frustration on the Electricity Company of Ghana and the Volta River Authority.
“I’m even afraid to leave my fridge on these days when I leave for work because for some strange reasons, the ECG is on an appliance destruction spree. We are tired, ECG!,” Daniel Antwi Twitted.
On Facebook, Nana Awere Damoah laments, “Which serious country builds its power plant based on gas supply from a country which can’t supply itself,” in reference to the West Africa Gas Pipeline Project
Sunday’s black is not the only time almost the entire country was plunged into total darkness.
On January 22, this year a similar blackout which hit part of seven regions of the country was attributed to an explosion which occurred during the installation of a new circuit breaker at the Volta Substation in Tema.
In December last year, a nationwide power outage which lasted close to four hours was attributed to the explosion of one of the breakers in the switch room of the Volta River Authority (VRA).
A similar one also lasted almost 30 minutes on In May 2003 just when the then acting CEO of the VRA, Mr Jabesh Amissah-Arthur, had taken over from Dr Charles Wereko-Brobbey
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