From Isaac Anumihe, Abuja

Again, one of the four Transmission Company of Nigeria, (TCN) towers has collapsed, a month after it was erected by TCN engineers, so throwing the residents of Gombe and Jos into perennial darkness.

The tower number T290, is along the Jos – Gombe 330kV transmission line.

The incident occurred yesterday while the contractor was stringing the cable on the last tower, which was supposed to enable the final jointing of the power cable in time for energizing of the line.

“Despite the security challenges in the area, TCN contractors and some of our engineering staff worked tirelessly to fast-track the project, doing all that was humanly possible to meet the time-line.

” Daily, the contractor, TCN engineers accompanied by security operatives consistently left the site by 10 pm in the night and resumed work at 6am every day.

Constructing towers and stringing power cables at such heights is highly technical, although TCN contractors and staff have successfully completed similar projects in other parts of the country. The collapse of the fourth tower is a significant setback, given the extensive efforts to ensure that today’s power restoration timeline was met.

“Our contractor is currently dismantling the collapsed tower members, to enable its reconstruction and final restringing of the cable.

“It’s unfortunate to note that while TCN is working on reconstructing and restringing the four vandalised towers, three towers along the Biu – Danbua 132kV transmission line were also vandalized with 16 spans of conductors stolen. The towers, which have all collapsed include towers T1690, T1691 and T1692.

” TCN has mobilized a contractor to commence their reconstruction. This discovery was made by TCN patrol team, last Friday.

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“Additionally, this morning, the TCN lines patrol team discovered that tower T540 along the Makurdi – Jos 330kV double circuit transmission line has been vandalised. Sections of the tower have been removed, although the tower remains standing. TCN has contracted emergency repairs, to prevent its collapse.

“We reiterate our commitment to restoring normal bulk power supply through the distribution companies serving the North East and other areas affected by vandalism. There is however an urgent need for everyone to join hands with TCN in protecting our collective assets by being vigilant and reporting any suspected acts of tower and line vandalism promptly” GM, Public Affairs of TCN, Ndidi Mbah, said

Recall that the same four towers along the Jos – Gombe 330kV transmission line were vandalised last month.

The is about the fourth time in four months TCN is reporting such incidences.

The same vandalism took place on December, 21, 2023, which caused the failure of power supply to parts of the North East, namely, Yobe and Borno states.

Just after that, TCN reported in February 2024 that towers along the Gombe – Damaturu 330kV had been brought down.

Three days later, TCN reported that vandals destroyed its towers 330kV Gwagwalada -Katampe Transmission line.

Again, the company has said that vandals destroyed its four towers along the Jos – Gombe 330kV transmission line.

According to Mbah, when the 330kV transmission line tripped, its operators attempted to restore it to service but it tripped again, prompting the dispatch of TCN linesmen to trace the line in order to detect and rectify the fault.

While fault tracing, TCN’s engineering crew discovered that
towers 288, 289 , 290, and 291 were vandalised and that some tower members were carted away. ENDS

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