Bangladesh, Dhaka: 39,000 power distribution transformers exploded around the country in the 2013-14 fiscal year, mostly due to overloading.
The incidents incurred losses worth BDT 290 crore ($37.4 million) in total for the authorities according to a study conducted by the Power Cell under the government’s Power Division. It included a comparison of power distribution characteristics in Bangladesh, the Philippines and Malaysia.
The transformer explosions caused prolonged power outages and revenue losses. A total of 4,040 transformers exploded in August this year causing BDT 30 crore ($3.9 million) worth of damage.
Power Cell Director Md Amzad Hossain told the Dhaka Tribune: “The damage of transformers portrays a very alarming picture. In the last three years, only three exploded in Malaysia – one because of insulation problem and the others from short circuit.”
80,000 or 70-80% transformers installed around the country are at risk of exploding at the moment according to the study. It has also been found that inadequate protective measures, poor workmanship and manufacturing errors had caused many transformer explosions.
Professionals said the overloading is generally caused by illegal connections which lead to overheating of the transformers and eventually the explosions. They added that sometimes low quality imported spare parts are installed which has also resulted in malfunctioning of the transformers.
Out of all the distributors, the REB has the highest rate of overloaded transformers, which is 76,277.
Source: Dhaka Tribune