Power outage : 12 m units wasted while loss exceeds Rs. 1 b

The Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) has stated that the loss incurred to the economy due to yesterday's (17) islandwide power failure could be over Rs. 1 billion.

The 8-hour long power failure had occured due to a technical fault in the Kerawalapitiya Grid Sub-station.

In some areas, power wasn't restored until around midnight.

The CEB says that the average supply of electricity during the daytime is 1.8 million units per hour while it is over 2 million units per hour at night.

During a power outage, the economic loss per unit of electricity is estimated at Rs. 125.

Country loses 12m units of power

According to CEB sources, the Norochcholai coal power plant and several other power plants were still operational despite the disruption in the transmission system.

However, the country has lost 12 million units of electricity within six hours due to the inability to generate electricity.

Due to the power outage, the traffic light system had been down, leading to severe traffic congestion in Colombo while water supply was temporarily disrupted in areas.

The Water Supply and Drainage Board had stated it will take several hours to restore water supply even after the power supply was restored.

The water supply to all drinking water treatment plants has been out of order since yesterday (17) afternoon.

The water supply to several areas of Colombo District were disrupted due to the disruption at Ambatale, Kalatuwawa and Labugama treatment plants.

Not an act of sabotage - Dallas

Meanwhile, minister Dullas Alahapperuma has told the media that he believes the incident is not an act of  sabotage.

Reminding that a similar outage took place in 2016 as well, the minister had expressed his regret over the inconvenience.

Meanwhile, the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka  has instructed the Ceylon Electricity Board to submit a report on the incident within three days.

The Electricity Trade Union Federation has also issued a statement in this regard.

They say that a new system control center has been set up in Battaramulla a few years ago to maintain the national power grid at a huge cost.

They are questioning the value of the new system control center project established at a huge cost when a disruption at a transmission line or grid substation leads to a failure of the whole system.

They also point out that no one would take responsibility despite committees being appointed like replacing bulbs.