Residents of multiple provinces in Zambia, including Northern, Muchinga, Luapula, Eastern, Northern, and Central, are bracing themselves for a temporary interruption in power supply as ZESCO Limited embarks on crucial annual maintenance activities on the main power system central corridor’s substation in Kabwe.
On September 16, 2023, ZESCO Limited initiated scheduled major annual maintenance works on the primary 330kV transmission line from Kabwe Step Down Substation to Pensulo Substation. These maintenance activities are set to occur on both September 16th and 17th, from 06:00 hours to 16:00 hours each day.
Justin Loongo, Director of Transmission, Operations, and Trade at ZESCO Limited, highlighted the significance of this transmission line, stating, “The 330kV Kabwe Step Down – Pensulo transmission line currently serves as the primary conduit for transporting power from Zambia’s major power generating stations in the southern part of the country to the five provinces in the northern region.” However, Mr. Loongo reassured the public that a long-term solution is in progress, with the construction of a second 330kV Kabwe Step Down-Pensulo transmission line. This project is already well-advanced and is scheduled for commissioning by the end of December 2023.
Once commissioned, the additional transmission line will not only bolster the capacity and security of power supply to the aforementioned provinces but will also offer increased flexibility in maintenance scheduling. This means that future maintenance work will not lead to power interruptions, ensuring uninterrupted service to consumers.
As a precautionary measure, ZESCO has advised all customers to treat all supply lines as live, as power restoration could occur before the stipulated timeframe. While acknowledging the inconvenience this outage may cause to customers, ZESCO Limited emphasized the necessity of these maintenance activities to ensure the reliability and efficiency of the power supply infrastructure.
Residents of the affected provinces are encouraged to make necessary arrangements to mitigate any potential disruptions during the scheduled maintenance period.