The power generation at Dr. Narla Tatarao Thermal Power Station (NTTPS), Ibrahimpatnam, may come to a halt, as the sole 500 MW unit that had been operating at a reduced production level may trip any moment post Sunday midnight. And in the event of its closure there is a chance for the Southern Grid collapsing, said the Vidyut JAC Convenor Satyanandam.

According to NTTPS Chief Engineer J. Samaiah, the unit was in critical condition as the coal level had come down and it was developing some technical problem by late Sunday night. According to the Chief Engineer , there was no dearth of coal but feeding was low compared to its normal requirement as there was no staff to handle the feeding process.

Almost all the employees except for the skeleton staff that was required to run the show are on strike in protest against the Cabinet’s decision to bifurcate the State, he said.

The plant has six 210 MW units and one 500 MW unit, installed generating capacity of 1,760 MW in total. While five of the 210 units had tripped on Thursday evening, one was shutdown for maintenance. Only the 500 MW was working and even that is on the verge of tripping, NTTPS JAC Convener Shyam Sundar told The Hindu .

The workers initially responded to the 48-hour bandh call given by the APNGO from Thursday, had joined the indefinite strike call given by the Vidyut JAC and in the process most them had not joined duty from Thursday and there was no effort to restart the units. The entire load was on the 500 MW unit to keep the grid active.

According to Mr. Satyanandam, in the event of grid collapse, all the 13 districts in the Seemandhra region and a couple in Telangana will plunge into darkness and all electric locomotives will be stranded midway.

More In: Vijayawada