PNG Power Limited (PPL) is reconstructing the transmission tower that was destroyed by a landslide in January 2018 at Kasam Pass, Eastern Highlands Province, media statement received yesterday (March 19) reports.
It is reported that the transmission tower supplies power to Lae and Madang from the Ramu 1 powerhouse at Yonki. However, it was toppled by a severe landslide in January 18, 2018 and disrupted power supply to customers in these two main regions.
PPL confirms this damage has also contributed to power instability in the Ramu Grid (Highlands, Lae and Madang) and it is an urgent reconstruction project that its engineers are undertaking.
According to the statement, the tower is located near the source of Singsing Creek approximately two (2) kilometers from the main Okuk Highway and is impossible to access. It took almost two months to build an access track and PPL chartered helicopter to transport materials and equipment to the reconstruction site.PPL chartered helicopter with materials at the reconstruction site
The new tower would be 30 meters in height and stronger to withstand weight of the transmission lines and earth quakes.
“We are working night and day to reconstruct the new tower. It will take about one to two months to complete and connect the lines for energizing,” PPL Lines Design Engineer Mr Jonathan Ahokare said.
“Our customers in the Ramu Grid are very important and we are making sure that this project is completed sooner in order to restore reliability to the system,” he added.
The Ramu Grid is experiencing power fluctuations as a result of flooding at the Ramu 1 power house, re-growths, rainfall and landslides damaging transmission towers and lines, PPL stated.
PPL is currently prioritizing all rehabilitation and reconstruction projects in the Ramu Grid to restore normalcy.