Staff Reporter

Bangalore: For several hours on two recent occasions, residents of a few parts of the city had to endure long hours without power when gale and thundershowers brought down several electricity poles. Bangalore Electricity Supply Company (BESCOM) incurred a loss of more than Rs. 50 lakh during the recent thundershowers. April 21 and May 16 are days that Bangaloreans will not forget as untimely and heavy rain lashed the city. Residents of Rajajinagar, Vijayanagar, Magadi Road, Indiranagar, HAL 2 {+n} {+d} Stage, Domlur, Jivan Bima Nagar, Yelahanka, Kaval Byrasandra, Sanjaynagar, J.P. Nagar and BTM Layout had to make do without power supply for several hours.

“Power supply was disrupted soon after it started to rain. Fortunately, we were all at home. When power supply was not restored even after several hours, I contacted BESCOM control room. I was told that several electricity poles had been brought down by the gale. Single-phase power was restored six hours later and three-phase power was restored the next day,” said P. Srinivas, resident of Vijayanagar. Pradeep Anantharamu, resident of Sanjaynagar, said that power supply was restored within a couple of hours on May 16. “Though several branches fell on the conductors and snapped them, BESCOM officials were able to restore supply soon. However, we only had single phase power till the next day,” he said.

Senior BESCOM officials, on condition of anonymity, told The Hindu that 196 electricity poles, six transformers and around five km of conductors were damaged due to the heavy rain on April 21. On May 16, heavy rain damaged 190 poles, seven transformers and around eight km of conductors. “Our officials worked round the clock to ensure that power supply is restored at the earliest. While electrification works were delayed, 11 kV power supply to around 80 per cent of the low tension consumers was restored within a day,” they said.

An official maintained that with the monsoon nearing, the power utility is gearing itself to ensure that consumers in the city are not affected. “We have developed a system of declaring emergency in areas where poles have been damaged. The emergency protocol is in place. This has been done to ensure that power supply is restored at the earliest,” he added.