This write-up is in the aftermath of first snowfall in the valley. While first snowfall is always a fascination and real delight to the eyes but it is not same to some of the vital public utility departments of the state like PDD, PHE, R&B, dewatering and drainage as it brings an emergency call to these agencies disrupting all the essential services and pushing the general public to even more miserable state.
A few inches of snow and all the public utility services are seen crumbling one after another pushing the delivery of essential services to grinding halt. No sooner the snowfall picks up a pace than the entire public utility system along with their men and infrastructure are seen in dire helplessness before the inclemency of the weather.
The power development department is seen capsizing with every pole that falls leaving the whole electric system asunder. People are thrown into darkness for days together while PDD with men and machinery struggling for restoration of power.
The reliability of the electric services can be gauged from the fact that then entire load supply of the valley had come down to a minimal low of 60 MWs as against the normal load supply of 1300 MWs by just falling of few flakes of snow. This raises questions on the strength and sustainability of power networks here in the state.
While more and more schemes are being announced both at Central and State level for improvement of power network, no quality improvement is seen at the ground level.
Keeping the topography and inclement weather conditions into perspective, the officials of the PDD should inculcate the weather factor while preparing their DPRs so that the system is not seen collapsing in a matter of minutes.
The department should be well prepared to face any kind of weather situation by strengthening its power network. Ensure quality and standard execution of works while the network is being laid pre-commissioning and the make the network somewhat weather resistant and weather reliable.
While so much blame is being is put on the power department as played in the media, people also have role and duty to render. People must cooperate with the department in such emergency situations.
The technicality of the power network is such that unless the last faulty part of the system is cleared the whole power network remains disrupted. The department is many a times forced to lay its lines along the less stable road banks and wetlands through thick foliage trees in view of non-availability of corridors.
Useless and unnecessary objections are posed by many people while power lines are being laid thereupon cornering the lines to fault prone corridors.
The result is that most of the power network gets in shambles post inclement weather and falling of trees on the power network. The people should make use of power judiciously and avoid any reckless and illegal use of power.
Use of more efficient and energy saving devices can save energy and money which can then be used to further strengthen the power networks.
Having said that the department must also cater to needs of its consumers by adopting some of the advanced technologies as used in other developed countries like advanced fault detection and correction mechanisms, use of quality material and quality execution standards besides standard safety measures for providing reliable power supply.