The Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) has explained that the power black out and load shedding in parts of Abuja metropolis, including Garki, Asokoro, Lugbe, Karu Keffi and environs was as a result of a fire incident which gutted the 60MVA, 132/33KV power transformer and the associated 33KV switch gears at the TCN substation, Apo.
According to TCN, the Apo station was gutted by fire ignited by direct lightening strike on Tuesday, September 16.
In a statement by TCN management, signed by the company’s Assistant General Manager (Public Affairs), Mr. Dave Ifabiyi, the fire started after an explosive sound from the 132/33KV switchyard at about 2.40pm.
He explained that the relay room and cable trenches within the control room were engulfed in smoke while engineers quickly disconnected the substation from the transmission grid to forestall further damage to other equipment, while the fire was successfully extinguished by the fire service.
Ifabiyi disclosed that TCN’s quick response engineering team has since been working assiduously to isolate the affected 60MVA, 330/123KV power transformer and replace cables of the 2x45MVA power transformers in the substation, so that service can be restored through the 2x45MVA and 1x100MVA power transformers not affected by the fire.
He explained further that as soon as isolation work is completed and the cables replaced, normal transmission of electricity to distribution load centers in Garki, Asokoro, Lugbe, International airport as well as Karu business units would commence.
The company also said that prior to the fire incident, the maximum distribution load required by the distribution business units that take supply from the Apo substation was 46MW.
Therefore, even with the reduced transmission capability of 190MW, their load demand would still be met.
“TCN regrets any inconvenience the incident has caused electricity customers in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja and thanked the Abuja Fire Service for its prompt response to putting out the fire,” Ifabiyi said.