Power back in 24% of Cebu south, 41% of metro Cebu after ‘Odette’

·5 min read

MORE than three weeks after Typhoon Odette (Rai) slammed into Cebu, about a quarter of consumers in the worst-hit southern parts of the province have now seen their power restored, while in parts of Metro Cebu, power has returned for some 41 percent of customers.

Cebu 1 Electric Cooperative Inc. (Cebeco 1), which covers 18 local government units (LGU) in the badly-hit southern Cebu, informed the Cebu Provincial Government that as of Wednesday, Jan. 5, it had partially energized towns in its franchise area.

During a meeting with Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia Wednesday, Cebeco 1 general manager Getulio Crodua said the power distributor had restored power in about a third of barangays located along the highways and energized 24 percent of consumers.

Capitol has made the restoration of power a priority in Cebu’s rehabilitation after Odette, as the lack of electricity affects the water supply and communication facilities.

Cebeco 1 gave this update on the number of barangays energized: Barili (12 of 42 barangays energized), Dumanjug (11 of 37 barangays), Ronda (four of 14 barangays), Alcantara (three of nine barangays), Moalboal (six of 15 barangays), Badian (three of 29 barangays), Alegria (three of nine barangays), Malabuyoc (six of 14 barangays), Ginatilan (five of 14 barangays), and Samboan (seven of 15 barangays).

For Santander, nine of 10 barangays were energized, Oslob (15 of 21 barangays), Boljoon (two of 11 barangays), Alcoy (two of eight barangays), Dalaguete (three of 33 barangays), Argao (three of 45 barangays), Sibonga (six of 25 barangays); and Carcar City (11 of 15 barangays), according to Sugbo News, the Capitol’s news platform.

Cebeco 1 hopes to complete all power restoration by mid-February, with help from linemen from Central Luzon, Eastern Visayas and Meralco, it said.

Odette made its seventh landfall in the country in Carcar City at 10 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 16, 2021, packing winds of 175 kilometers per hour near the center and gusts of up to 240 kilometers per hour.

Cebeco 1 earlier said Odette was the strongest storm to hit southern Cebu in 31 years and that the large number of fallen trees entwined in its power lines had been delaying its work.

Visayan Electric

As for central Cebu, for the eastern seaboard, Visayan Electric said that as of 12 noon Friday, Jan. 7, it had energized 196,123 or 41 percent of the 474,182 affected customers in its franchise area.

Visayan Electric covers eight LGUs: the cities of Cebu, Mandaue, Talisay, Naga and the municipalities of Liloan, Consolacion, Minglanilla and San Fernando.

With residents getting increasingly impatient about the pace of restoration, Visayan Electric has warned against paying to gain priority in power restoration, saying that “Visayan Electric does not collect fees for energization or repair of collapsed poles or downed lines.”

In a statement Friday, Visayan Electric said it had received reports of individuals or contractors “extorting money in exchange for prioritization of the re-elecrification of their homes or establishments.”

It asked the public not to “participate in these illegal activities,” saying it would not be liable for any damage or loss linked to such unauthorized re-energization arrangements as it also does not warrant the quality of the materials used in such unauthorized connections.

Last month, Visayan Electric announced that it aimed to energize 30 percent of its customers by Dec. 31, a target that it missed; 80 percent by Jan. 10, 2022; and 100 percent by Jan. 31, 2022.

As of the Jan. 5 meeting with Garcia, when Visayan Electric had energized just 37.26 percent of its customers, Anton Perdices, chief operating officer of AboitizPower, of which the utility is a subsidiary, said it had energized 40.17 percent of customers in Liloan; 16.55 percent in Consolacion, 36.79 percent in Talisay City, 38.5 percent in Minglanilla, 29.69 percent in the City of Naga, and 36.15 percent in San Fernando, Sugbo News said.

Perdices also said all hospitals in its franchise area had been energized, as well as 70 to 80 percent of the water pumping stations of the Metropolitan Cebu Water District.

Cebeco 3, midwest

In midwest Cebu, Cebeco 3 reported separately that as of 3 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 6, power had been restored to half or 50.38 percent of the households in its franchise area after it energized 44.83 percent of the 145 barangays it serves.

Specifically, power had been restored to 81.14 percent of households in Asturias, 76.45 percent of households in Balamban, 46.89 percent of households in Aloguinsan, 40.10 percent of households in Toledo City, and 29.52 percent of households in Pinamungajan.

It had also restored power to 1.73 percent of households in Cebu City’s mountain barangays which are part of the Visayan Electric franchise served by Cebeco 3, it said Thursday.

Cebeco 3 targets 100 percent restoration of power by Jan. 31.

Mactan Electric

For the island of Mactan in the east, Mactan Electric Company has energized portions of Lapu-Lapu City and Cordova town without saying what proportion of its franchise area these portions represented.

Cebeco 2, north

In northern Cebu not badly hit by Odette, Cebeco 2 general manager Lowell Belciña informed the Capitol that as of Wednesday, Jan. 5, it had restored 95 percent of the power in the 13 LGUs in its franchise area and 97 percent of households. It targets to restore 100 percent of the power on Jan. 12.

Cebeco 2 covers Carmen, Sogod, Borbon, Tabogon, Tabuelan, Tuburan, San Remigio, Medellin, Daanbantayan and Bogo City, where 99 percent of consumers had already been energized as of Jan. 4, it announced earlier.

As of noon Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2022, Cebeco 2 also said only Compostela, Danao City and Catmon were partially energized, with 41 percent, 57 percent and 95 percent, respectively, of their barangays energized. (CTL)

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