Blackout due to sudden failure of Demerara-Berbice Interconnected System

– power restored to most areas by 9am

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Guyana PowerandLight(GPL), Mr. Bharat Dindyal says the power outage which occurred on Monday morning was due to a sudden failure of the Demerara-Berbice Interconnected System. Power was restored to about 90 percent of the affected areas by 09:00 hours.

Mr. Dindyal said while the company was still receiving data to determine the cause of the shutdown, it is believed to have been caused by the failure of a transformer at the Garden of Eden plant.

“That transformer was put in service in the ‘70s and is due for retirement so we are investigating to verify whether in fact, it is the reason the system collapsed. But there is lot more data to come in and we have analysed all of the data,” he said.

CEO of the Guyana Power and Light, Mr. Bharat Dindyal

GPL launched a programme in 2013 to analyse the oil from transformers installed in the 1970s to determine which have to be replaced but this was abandoned in 2016. However, Mr. Dindyal said in 2019, oil samples were sent to the United States for testing and this revealed that the transformer at Garden of Eden was the cause of outages.

“So right now, we are rushing to get some replacement transformers- 69KB transformers. In fact, the entire fleet of transformers which includes the one at No. 53 Village, Onverwagt, two at Garden of Eden and Sophia needs to be replaced. We are currently talking about an investment of over US $2 million which has to happen,” he said.

Recently, GPL pledged to end the frequent blackouts affecting residents along the East Coast and East Bank Demerara due to an interference in the 13.8kV line and lack of maintenance.

Minister within Ministry of Public Works, Hon. Deodat Indar has said there would be maintenance works between Sophia and Ogle to remedy issues affecting the transmission line.  These works would then boost the Demerara-Berbice Interconnected System and lead to a significant reduction in power outages.