TAGBILARAN CITY – All elementary and secondary classes in public and private schools all over the province are suspended today even as total power blackout has practically paralysed business establishments in the province as a result of the typhoon “Ruby” that battered Leyte yesterday, where Bohol relies much of its power supply. Schools division superintendent Dr. Wilfreda Bongalos of the Department of Education confirmed this in an exclusive interview last night following queries from various sectors and parents. Text queries on no-classes report flooded the cyber highways.
Bongalos said that the suspension today is intended to give teachers time to make preparations for back to schools used as evacuation centers by displaced persons who took refuge in anticipation of the typhoon “Ruby.”
But classes will resume on Tuesday, she said.
Elementary and secondary classes last Friday were cancelled as a precautionary move for typhoon “Ruby.” Gov. Edgar Chatto made the announcement per recommendation of Bongalos, who huddled with the governor during the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (PDRRMC).
Meanwhile, total blackout engulfed the entire province yesterday. It was uncertain when it’ll be restored. Per media advisory of the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) said that it “is coordinating with Leyte power plants, which went offline around 9 AM today, for the supply to be transmitted to Bohol via Maasin 138KV –Maasin-Ubay submarine cable.” Power interruption in Bohol “after 138 KV Ubay-Maasin line was isolated by UFR (Under Frequency Relay) activation,” NGCP said.
“UFR is part of an automatic scheme to maintain system balance when significant changes occur to the grid such as the present unavailability of geothermal power plant in Leyte which was affected byheavy rains,” it added.Bohol is very much dependent on geothermal power from Leyte. It adversely experienced total blackout for weeks following the magnitude 7.2 earthquake that struck the province on October 15, 2013, leaving scores of deaths and havoc on infrastructure, private properties, public buildings and important cultural heritage.
A combined power of three hydro power plants in Loboc, Sevilla and Balilihan and Bohol Diesel Power Plant (BDPP) based in this city can only supply around 22 MW. It needs around 68 MW enough to supply the power requirement.
Businesses, like hotels and restaurants in this city and those in the tourist belt in Panglao island have no choice but to use their standby power generators just to cater their visitors.