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Papar kids using candles to study: SESB to act on supply woes
Published on: Wednesday, April 17, 2024
By: Sidney Skinner
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Papar kids using candles to study: SESB to act on supply woes
Candles have to be lit so that these children can do their homework because the ceiling lights in their home have grown too dim.
SABAH Electricity Sdn Bhd (SESB) will be keeping tabs on the supply to a Papar village while it works on upgrading its system in the district.

This action was prompted by feedback about the power irregularities which have beset Kg Padawan.

Those living in the village were under the impression that insufficient electricity was being supplied to the area as their household appliances could not operate at maximum capacity at night. 

The consumer, who contacted Hotline, said his children had to use candles to study, after sundown, even though the fluorescent lights had been switched on due to the dimness of the latter.

His grievance was forwarded to the company.

A SESB technician changes the tapping point for one home in the village to a different phase on the transmission lines nearby.

A SESB spokesman explained that these power woes were a result of a voltage drop.

“Our staff went to check on the voltage in the village shortly after we learned about what had been going on,” he said.

He said the strength of the electricity in one house that morning was about 205 volts, while in another it was about 223 volts.

“Our technicians later used ladders to reach the nearest transmission lines and changed the tapping points for some of these premises to a different phase. 

The spokesman said this was done to try and ease the problems which the occupants had been experiencing.

New readings, taken after the change was made, showed that the voltage had improved substantially, according to him.

“We intend to conduct a night-time check in the village since this is when the irregularities involving our supply were noted.

“If there is still something amiss with the voltage then we will have to brainstorm on possible solutions to take.”

He said SESB hoped to provide Kg Padawan with a new transformer in the long term to improve the supply to the village.

“However, we if we do decide to proceed with this plan, we can only begin putting it in motion, at the earliest, by next year. 

“We have already earmarked a potential site for this installation along Jalan Kawakahan.

Voltage readings were taken before the change to a different phase was enacted.

“We will have to acquire this land, as well as apply for way-leave to put up new overhead lines before we can begin putting the new transformer in place.”

RYAN of Papar said the electrical appliances in his home had not functioned as they should for some time.

He said the lights in his home did not operate at their full brightness. 

“Sometimes, they go out all by themselves without any of us switching them off,” he said.

He said the ceiling fan in his bedroom did not spin at the speed that it was meant to.

“I will switch on the fan and choose the maximum setting, before turning in for the night.

“Several hours later, I will be awakened by the heat, to find that the fan is spinning slowly as if it was at its lowest setting.

“Off late, I have noticed that my refrigerator has begun vibrating. It makes an unusual noise as if the compressor is about to go.” 

Ryan shared his frustrations with one of his neighbours who claimed the electrical gadgets in his house had also been functioning strangely.

“My friend told me that he had phoned the SESB customer Management Centre on and off about what had been happening in Kg Padawan. Technicians came to his house on one or two occasions in response to these calls. 

“Each of these staff informed him that ‘tidak cukup bekalan di area kamu’ (there was insufficient power in my area).”

Ryan said these personnel assured his neighbour that the company would make further checks before getting to the bottom of this problem.

“Last year, my friend was told that the transformer near the village had become worn down and might need to be changed.”

When Ryan liaised with Hotline, he said the transformer had yet to be replaced. 

“The power situation has gradually been getting worse. Previously, our electrical appliances would only act up every other night.

“Now, this happens has become a daily occurrence.”

He said the power woes had cost those living in the village dearly.

“Many of our electrical goods have been damaged because of the irregular supply.” 

Ryan said the village, located about 10km from Papar, was made up of 60 homes.

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