Transformers ‘causing long outages’

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The Lahore Electric Supply Company (LESCO) is not paying proper attention towards transformers, which is causing long hours of electricity closure in the city.
LESCO officials were not managing and checking the load of consumers, which resulted in failure of transformers. Around 1,000 transformers went out of order in the last eight months causing losses worth Rs 20 million to LESCO. Transformers were used to manage load of the area and if there was an overload, transformers collapsed and electricity of the area was switched off. Often, the transformers went out of order due to overload. It was duty of linesmen of the company to check load of consumers and according to that, load upgraded transformers. But LESCO staff was showing lethargic attitude in this regard and seldom checked load of consumers. As a result, the load on transformers increased, which eventually damaged them.
An engineer of the company, seeking anonymity, said that in the last two months, around every sub-division of LESCO faced the problem. There were more than 150 sub-divisions in jurisdiction of LESCO. He said that repairing staff had to work around the clock to repair transformers. If a transformer went out of order in any area then it takes around five to eight hours to replace a new transformer. In the whole time, electricity of that area was switched off and consumers had to suffer. Often LESCO staff, instead of replacing the out of order transformer, just puts another transformer over a trolley. “It is dangerous for residents and they are at risk of being electrocuted,” he said adding that in this way LESCO puts life of consumers at risk.
Consumers said that they faced huge problems due to closure of electricity. They said that often electricity was closed at night and restored after eight hours. “Last week, electricity was closed at 2am and restored at 9am. We had to suffer seven hours of closures,” consumer Habib Ahmed of the Shalimar division said adding that LESCO staff showed a lethargic attitude in the whole episode. “Neither the SDO nor the XEN picked the phone. We were not sure when will electricity be restored,” he added.
Another consumer Amir Latif of Green Town Sub-Division said that no one was taking this issue seriously and just lingering on the problem. “Our transformer went out of order twice last week and LESCO officials are not taking it seriously,” he lamented. LESCO received repairing cost from consumers and in return, gave them bad service. Residents of all private societies were bound to pay for transformers cost but even then they did not get quality service. “We have paid for repairing cost of transformers,” Muqarram Khan, a resident of a private society, said.