Street lighting ‘switch-on’ hit by blackout

The street lighting project covers 55 street lights in Barangays Maunlad, Bagong Sikat, Princesa, Masigla, and Masipag.


In an ironic reflection of the power problems of Puerto Princesa City, the government’s ceremonial “switch-on” of its street lighting projects in five city villages on Tuesday was interrupted by a power outage that hit the entire city.

Mayor Lucilo Bayron said he could not understand why the total blackout would happen on the night residents of the five barangays are supposed to be jubilant because of the street lighting projects that would keep them safe.

“Sabi nila na ang na-ge-generate na kuryente ay 62 megawatts at ang peak load ay 42 megawatts lang. Pero bakit brownout? Dismayado na talaga ang mga mamamayan. Walang ibang magsasabi sa PALECO kundi tayong mga kunsomidores ng kuryente,” he said during the program.

The ceremonial switch-on was supposed to start at 7:30 p.m., but the power went off at 7:00 p.m. and did not return until 9:00 p.m.

“Itong pailaw na ito ay Bayanihan project. Ang sabi sa akin pahabain ko daw [ang pagsasalita] kasi wala pang kuryente. Sa susunod papailawan na natin ang ating mga ibang poste, pero paano iyan ganito na walang ilaw?” he said.

The mayor believes power interruptions will continue to persist despite the claim of PALECO that there is sufficient supply.

He said he could not also understand why the power firm “would continue to claim there is sufficient supply and yet constant power outages are being experienced in the city. “

No ceremonial lighting switch-on happened in Maunlad, but Bayron still addressed barangay officials and residents who attended the event using the village’s generating set.

He said the project is part of the city’s  P143 million budget for road lighting to ensure security in urban areas and raise the quality of life by artificially extending the hours in which there is light so people can do more outside activities safely at night.

“Sa amount na yan, ang naibabawas dyan itong pailaw ng Mabini Street, yong pailaw ng Wescom Road, pagkatapos yong sa harapan ng simbahan ng Katoliko at Iglesia ni Cristo sa (Barangay) Sta. Monica, at iba pang mga pailaw natin,” he said.

He also added the “Apuradong Administrasyon” has a program for the massive lighting of all streets in Puerto Princesa City and is likely to partner with Philips Company, maker of light bulbs.

“Sinadya na atra-atrasuhin kasi meron tayong nakakausap na kompanya yong gumagawa ng mga bombilya, yong Philips. Itong Philips nagpakita ng interest na makipagtulungan sa lungsod ng Puerto Princesa… maraming siyudad, munisipyo at probinsya na kinakausap sila na unahin ang kanilang lugar pero itong lahat sila, talo sa lungsod… sa kakayahan na magpagawa ng world-standard o international standard na pailaw,” he said.

Bayron said that there is no other city  in the Philippines that has an  international standard street lighting project except Puerto Princesa.

Philips reportedly sent two representatives to the city to get information and important data about its roads to calculate the need for street lights.

“Ang sabi sa akin ang nagtratrabaho ng proyekto para sa street lighting para sa lungsod ay buong opisina ng Philips company doon sa Singapore. Wala na daw ginawa lahat ng empleyado doon kung hindi i-plano ang ating pag-aangat ng standard ng pailaw,” he said.

He said he informed Philips to have the plan available as soon as possible since he wants the street lighting to be implemented simultaneously with the lighting of the giant Christmas tree on December 1.

The street lighting will be from Barangays Sta. Lourdes and Irawan down to the city. However, Philips reportedly said the length of time is not enough.

“Lahat ng puwedeng pailawan, pailawan na — sabi ko one time, big time. Sabi naman nila (Philips) gustuhin man daw nila ay di kakayanin dahil malapit na ang December 1. Ngayon humingi sila ng kaunting extension na kaya daw nila ng February 14,” he said.

The road lightings with Philips will be done based on “smart lighting technology” which is designed for energy efficiency.

He said it is the city government’s dream for Puerto Princesa to have international standard road lighting.

The street lighting project covers 55 street lights in Barangays Maunlad, Bagong Sikat, Princesa, Masigla, and Masipag.

Of the number of street lights, 27 were installed in Maunlad.

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