Power supply disrupted by cyclone Fani during the day damaging electricity transformers, distribution lines and electricity poles has been restored by Saturday night. As Fani razed through the country power supply at different parts of the coastal and north-eastern areas of the country were partially damaged. But through the hectic efforts of concerned employees and officials of Rural Electrification Board (REB) throughout Saturday night, it was successfully normalised, said officials of the board.
Around 25 percent people in rural areas including the costal and river belts were out of power as Fani uprooted electricity poles and severed distribution lines.
“Around 80 percent of the nearly 10 million people hit by the outage, are consumers of REB,” said a top REB official, adding the cyclone uprooted over 200 poles belonging to REB and Bangladesh Power Development Board (PDB) across the country.
REB and West Zone Power Distribution Co (WZPDCo) were the most affected by the storm among the power distribution companies. Meanwhile, connections to over 200,000 consumers of the PDB – mostly in Mymensingh, Cumilla, Tangail and Feni – remained snapped as over 80 of its electricity poles were uprooted.
On Sunday afternoon, REB Chairmen Moin Uddin told Bangladesh Post, "We have already restored 98 percent of the damage connections. We are hoping to restart power supply in full swing by the evening."
WZPDCo Assistance Engineer Motiur Rahman told Bangladesh Post: “The power distribution lines tripped when trees collapsed on them. Now there have no problem. We have been able to restore power supply to those area in a very short time." Meanwhile, a senior BPDB official said about 115,000 of its consumers, out of 2.8 million, faced power cuts when the cyclone hit their areas. The power supply infrastructures in Mymensingh, Cumilla and Chattogram were mostly affected. Now the power supply is being restored in those affected areas.
An official of National Load Dispatch Centre which mainly controls electricity generation and transmission system across the country, said that power demand came down to 5,500MW at 6:30pm on Saturday following the cyclone. "Normally, the power demand is over 11,000MW in summer. But following the cyclone, the demand has been reduced to half. After restoring damaged lines and transformers, the power supply is being increased gradually," he said.
He further said, “The power division successfully prevented any major disruption of power, thanks to automatic power control system on supply side.” The strongest cyclone to hit India in five years, Fani killed at least 12 people in eastern Odisha state, before swinging north-eastwards into Bangladesh on Saturday where four more people died although more than a million had been moved to safety.