National grid faces third major collapse in two months

National grid faces third major collapse in two months

krkKARACHI: Power supply has been restored to at least 95 percent areas of Karachi, according to a spokesman of K-Electric. He said nominal technical faults will be removed soon in the remaining 5 percent areas.

Earlier, parts of Pakistan including Sindh, Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, federal capital Islamabad, and some areas of Punjab plunged into complete darkness after a major technical fault struck the national grid here on Saturday night.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif took notice of the power breakdown and directed to restore the power supply at the earliest.

Talking to SAMAA overnight, State Minister for Power and Water Abid Sher Ali apologised and assured that measures will be taken up to preempt the likes of crises in future.

Five hours after the blackout, the power was completely restored in KPK including Peshawar and efforts are afoot to for phased restoration in Islamabad, Karachi and Lahore.

“The power outage was caused after an extra high-tension wire tripped, K-Electric spokesman Usama Qureshi told Samaa soon after the power failure.

Qureshi also clarified that K-Electric was not responsible for the breakdown.

“We have reports that entire Sindh is facing the blackout,” Qureshi added.

According to sources in Ministry of Water & Ministry, engineers were racing against time to fix the crisis.

In Karachi, dozens of grid stations tripped offline, plunging at least 90 per cent of the city into darkness. Other cities and towns in Sindh also reported complete power outage.

In most of Balochistan, including Quetta, there was no power supply.

Several Punjab cities including Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Bahawlpur, Bahawalnagar, Rahim Yar Khan, Murree Multan and Lahore are plunged into darkness.

Reportedly, 600 megawatt power supply from Muzaffargarh Thermal Power Station was suspended after loud explosions inside the plant. Sources said that so loud were the blasts that local residents came running out of their houses to see what hell had broken loose in their town.

Sources in National Transmission & Despatch Company (NTDC) said that this chain reaction or somewhat domino effect of ‘power failure’ was actually set into motion after Balochistan’s sprawling Uch-1 and Uch-2 Power Stations tripped offline at around 11:56.

They also added it was not the first time that both the plants had gone down triggering nationwide failure.

According to sources in NTDC, a full restoration of electricity supply may take at least two hours.

Experts say tripping or power-system protection is aimed at protection of electrical power systems from faults through the isolation of faulted parts from the rest of the electrical network.

The objective of a protection scheme is to keep the power system stable by isolating only the components that are under fault, whilst leaving as much of the network as possible still in operation.

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