Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Five hour blackout due to the earthquake

The 7.2 magnitude earthquake that struck 36 kilometres northwest of Bulolo, Morobe Province at 7.19am yesterday caused a five hour blackout in Lae city.
PNG Power Limited regional transmission and distribution manager Albert Nanako confirmed the power outage in the city occurred as the quake shook the machines at the Ramu power grid.
Mr Nanako said the machines in the Ramu grid, Baiune and Paunda power stations all came to a complete stop when the quake struck.
“The machines tripped off and before we could re-start them, we had to thoroughly check the machines to confirm they are in good operational status before we could restore power,” he said.
In an emergency outage notice, PNG Power said: “It has caused all power to fail on the Ramu Grid with reports of machines moving, minor damage to power houses especially Ramu and Baiune IPP and some reports of transformers on fire.”
Mr Nanako confirmed that his men have restored power at the Taraka area and moving into Milford place then the rest of the city.
By midday yesterday, electricity was fully restored.
The earthquake created fear and anxiety among the residents and some business houses had to send their employees home over fear of a tsunami.
The Department of Mineral Policy and Geohazards management said in an information bulletin that the earthquake was a result of the interaction of the South Bismarck and the Woodlark plates.

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