Electricity supply in Marudi restored after repair work completed on damaged power cables

A technician carries out repair work on the 33 kilovolt (kV) high tension tower. Photo courtesy of Sarawak Energy Bhd

KUCHING, July 6: The electricity supply in Marudi was restored on Saturday (July 4) following two days of extensive repair works in response to snapped power lines after they were suspected to have been struck by lightning.

Syarikat Sesco Bhd chief executive officer (CEO) Lau Kim Swee in a press statement today disclosed: “We deeply regret the inconvenience caused to the residents of Marudi and thank them for their patience and kind support over this time.

“The team will continue to monitor the performance of the supply lines and will remain on standby until we are assured that the system has really stabilised.”

Lau revealed after the electricity in Marudi was cut off due to the incident on July 2, repair work to replace power lines were carried out on July 4 at 6pm and electricity supply to the area was progressively restored until stable power supply reached all affected areas at 7.10pm.

He added the repair works included replacing broken conductors and cracked insulators.

“We are glad that despite some difficult weather, water and terrain conditions, the team was able to restore supply safely.

“Safety is top priority for us at Sarawak Energy so the team was only allowed to start work after it was deemed safe,” he highlighted.

Lau disclosed that prior to the full restoration of electricity supply in Marudi town, the majority of the town area was provided with electricity through 10 mobile generator sets to provide temporary supply to critical facilities and as many residential areas as possible.

Following the interruption at 4pm on July 2, Sarawak Energy had intensified efforts to restore electricity supply to the riverine town and its surrounding areas, increasing manpower resources and bringing in machinery.

Lau also noted recent heavy rainfall had caused flooding at the location leading to the tower hosting the damaged power cables.

Electricity supply in Marudi was fully restored on Saturday (July 4, 2020) evening following extensive repair work. Photo courtesy of Sarawak Energy Bhd

To perform repair works, Sarawak Energy’s technical team had to wade through chest-high water levels over swamp and muddy terrain caused by a torrential thunderstorm before reaching the site at 4am on July 3, 12 hours after the outage occurred.

“We appreciate the team’s efforts in overcoming these challenges and doing the necessary rectification works to restore supply safely as soon as possible,” Lau added.

Lau also revealed regular patrols are done to inspect the 44km of power lines in Marudi which transmit electricity from the Marudi junction substation to Marudi.

He noted the power lines traverse forested areas and also private oil palm plantation estates, obstructing smooth access in the event of a fault. — DayakDaily