A RARE citywide power outage paralysed Mumbai on Monday, halting local train services, trapping people in lifts and disrupting work from home adopted by millions during the ongoing pandemic. Power restoration efforts began on “war footing” and pocket-wise resumption in supply was started around 12 noon onwards, nearly two hours after the outage. Trains services took two and half hours to resume operations, beginning with CR’s Harbour Line.
The trains are carrying only essential services workers at present, which helped minimise the passenger inconvenience. Both the Western Railway and Central Railway blamed the power cut from Tata Power (their power supplier) for the disruption in services. With work-from-home becoming the norm across the services sector, employee output was impacted as the homes do not have power back-ups like institutional bodies. However, a few were not so lucky, like the employees working in an upscale business complex in central Mumbai who found themselves stuck in an elevator during times of social distancing. After a few jittery minutes, they were evacuated.
In June 2018, there was a widespread power outage in the city and adjoining areas due to a technical glitch and also led to sustained period of load-shedding for some consumers. Maharashtra’s Power Minister Nitin Raut said that the trouble on Monday emanated from Maharashtra State Electricity Transmission Company (MSETCL) facilities during a planned maintenance work. Tata Power, which is into both generation and distribution, attributed the outage to a simultaneous substation tripping at 1010 hrs at State-run transmission company MSETCL’s two substations in the suburbs of Kalwa and Kharghar. Power outages were reported from suburbs like Thane, Panvel, Dombivili and Kalyan as well, along with those in the island city and the suburbs.
Raut assured that power supply will resume soon, as officials were working on it on a war-footing. As the afternoon progressed, power at many pockets including the Bandra Kurla Complex business district, Lower Parel, the western suburbs and South Mumbai started resuming operations. With the number of COVID-19 infections still very high and many patients recovering in hospitals including specially-created facilities rendering services like oxygen supply, Municipal Commissioner of Mumbai I S Chahal instructed staff to bolster diesel supply to last up to eight hours and also scout for mobile diesel generator vans which are used at film shoots as a standby.
Power Ministry to send Central team to study Mumbai outage
Oct 12 (PTI)
A CENTRAL team comprising officials from the Central Electricity Authority (CEA) would be sent to Mumbai to study the power breakdown in the city on Monday and assist the State Government in finding solutions to such situations, Power Minister R K Singh said. “A Central team will visit Mumbai to identify the problem and to find out possible solutions against such break down,” Singh said in a statement issued by the Ministry of Power on Monday evening. Earlier in the day, the Minister said, the power supply in Mumbai has been restored substantially. “Out of more than 2000 MW which went off, about 1900 MW has been restored, the remaining will be restored soon. The national grid is fine, the problem happened in some parts of the State grid,” he added. The Minister also said that central power sector officers have been rendering assistance for restoring full electricity supply in Mumbai.
CM orders probe into power outage
Oct 12 (PTI)
MAHARASHTRA Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Monday took serious cognisance of a massive power outage in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) and ordered an immediate probe into it. State Energy Minister Nitin Raut also said that the reasons behind the technical snag that caused power failure in parts of the MMR will be probed once the electricity supply is restored. After ordering a probe, the CM held a meeting at his official residence in afternoon which was attended by State Chief Secretary Sanjay Kumar and representatives of power supplying companies like BEST, Tata and Adani.
Nitin Raut and Minister of State for Energy Prajakt Tanpure attended the meeting via video conferencing. Earlier in the day, an official statement said Thackeray took serious note of the power outage and ordered an immediate probe into it. Thackeray instructed BMC Commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal to make alternate arrangements so that power supply to hospitals is intact, the statement said. He also directed the State Chief Secretary to ensure that the control rooms and fire brigade are on alert to see there are no other mishaps due to power outage, it said.