By EVAH BANIGE
THE frequent and lengthy power outages in Lae in the past week have overridden the functions of generators.
PNG Waterboard executive manager operations Rex Taviri said generators were not designed for continuous operation and, thus these machines have not been able to keep up with the current power cuts in the industrial capital.
Mr Taviri made the comments following the shut down of the PNG Power Ramu power plant for emergency work which saw city residents go without electricity and water.
Frequent power outages he said have been taking a toll on the effectiveness of PNG Waterboard’s ability to ensure a reliable water supply into Lae.
Mr Taviri said the continuous outages coupled with illegal connections and leakages have been costing the Waterboard thousands of kina in maintaining operations not only in Lae, but also in other parts of the country.
“We can replace generators but there is a need for reliable power supply because continuous power outages have had greater wear and tear on the generators, shortening their lifespan,” he said.
Mr Taviri said vandalism of pipelines, power hydrants and generator parts added on the woes.
He said leakages and illegal water connections have been responsible for much of the low water pressure in the city.
Meanwhile, as part of its plans to revamp the Lae water system, the board has already commissioned a new generator for Bore One near the University of Technology’s (Unitech) main entrance costing about K130,000.
This generator would help further improve service delivery.