Maintaining energy infrastructure in Sabah | Daily Express Malaysia
The IT department found that there were misconceptions about SESB’s approach to asset maintenance. Contrary to misconceptions, asset maintenance is indeed a top priority for SESB.

We would like to highlight an event that highlights our dedication to this important aspect of our operations.

Since the end of last year, we have been working hard on infrastructure issues, particularly the two transmission towers at Kg in Ranau.

Landagon gun and kilonabutane were found to be damaged during routine inspection work.

This instability was caused by sedimentation and active land movement around the 275kV transmission tower site.

Recognizing the urgency of the situation, we immediately began emergency replacement work.

In collaboration with our partners at Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB), we quickly installed a temporary diversion tower known as the Emergency Recovery System (ERS).

This collaborative effort underscores our unwavering commitment to protecting Sabah’s energy infrastructure.

Then, on February 7, 2024, we began relocating the ERS tower transmission line to ensure continuity of critical services.

The importance of restoring these towers cannot be overstated. If both towers were to collapse, it would cause a major energy crisis and negatively impact the lives of people in Sabah.

Nevertheless, it is important to note that ERS installation is not unfamiliar territory for SESB. To date, SESB has successfully completed more than 50 similar projects, demonstrating its expertise and dedication to mitigating potential crises.

Collaborative efforts with TNB and valuable support from the state government, especially the Royal Malaysian Air Force (TUDM), played a key role in facilitating the progress of the project.

TUDM transported five containers worth of equipment from Selangor to Sabah, facilitating timely execution of critical tasks.

However, the logistical challenges encountered during the transportation of the ERS tower’s equipment proved to be a major stumbling block.

Roads, terrain conditions, and the isolated nature of the tower site were major obstacles. Imagine towering trees, rugged terrain, and treacherous slopes all standing between our team and the critical mission at hand.

Given the difficult-to-access nature of the site, traditional transportation methods proved futile. The lack of an access road prevented the 40-ton trucks used to transport containers with ERS equipment inside from reaching the tower, forcing staff to take matters into their own hands, driving through dense forest and difficult terrain. were forced to move heavy machinery by hand.

Additionally, clearing the area to create a path for transporting the equipment took considerable time and effort. Preparing the terrain required approximately two weeks of meticulous work, further highlighting the magnitude of the challenge we faced.

Finally, on March 25th, thanks to the joint efforts of SESB’s internal experts and TNB, the relocation operation was successfully completed.

This milestone not only ensured the stability of Sabah’s energy infrastructure, but also paved the way for the construction of two new transmission towers in Ranau to replace the ones damaged in the recent accident.

When I visited the new location, I was deeply impressed by the staff’s unwavering dedication. Many of the employees were fasting during the holy month of Ramadan.

Despite the sweltering heat and difficult conditions, their commitment to their work was determined and exemplified professionalism and dedication, and they deserve the highest praise. Masu.

These recent events highlight the critical importance of projects like Southern Link in strengthening Sabah’s energy resilience. Currently, the 275 kilovolt Koropis-Segalude line serves as the only transmission link between Sabah’s east and west coasts, providing approximately 200 megawatts (MW) of electricity. However, the vulnerability of this single connection poses a significant risk to the state’s energy security.

The Southern Link project is an important step towards improving energy security in Sabah. The proposed construction of a 330km 275kv transmission line from Sipitan to Tenom, Kalabakan and Tawau holds great promise in strengthening the state’s energy infrastructure.

Implementation of the Southern Link project is scheduled for next year, but its realization depends on the government’s final decision on project implementation.

From Sabah’s perspective, the project should be funded through a grant from the federal government, as originally planned.

This is a long-awaited important infrastructure for stabilizing electricity in Sabah. Indeed, the need for additional infrastructure to strengthen the state’s energy resiliency cannot be overstated.

We therefore remain steadfast in our support of this important initiative that promises to strengthen Sabah’s energy infrastructure for generations to come.

– The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Daily Express.

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