Power cuts: CEB blows hot and cold

The Ceylon Electricity Board Engineers Union (CEBEU) President Janaka Aluthge yesterday assured there would be no power cuts despite the current shortfall in power output.

The senior engineer told The Island however, there might be power cuts in some areas due to already scheduled maintenance work or when a transformer tripped goes off and due to other technical problems.

However, some other engineers said the CEB had decided to go for power cuts with effect from yesterday due to the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation’s failure to supply either low sulphur fuel or diesel to the 300MW Kerawalapitiya Plant. The Kerawalapitiya combined cycle plant came handy during a crunch situation to cover the peak hour.

Aluthge said that the dispute between the CEB and the CPC was an old one.

However, CPC officials confirmed that with the arrival of 35,000 MT of low sulphur oil from Dubai on Sunday, plans were underway to supply the Kerawalapitiya Plant with the required fuel. It is also learnt that it would take at least two and a half days to restart the plant as the fuel needs to be processed.

CPC Managing Director Susantha Silva told The Island since he assumed duties at the plant 20 months ago, he had never ordered that fuel supplies be stopped to any power plant.

He said that President Mahinda Rajapaksa had given clear instructions to the CPC to ensure that power plants were supplied with fuel without interruptions.

The CPC Managing Director also said that as soon as the shipment was unloaded the Kerawalapitiya Plant would be supplied with fuel.

Meanwhile, officials also said that Gas Turbine plant in the Kelanitissa Power Complex which provided 113MW had broken down. (IN)

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