Hyderabad, October 04: The unprecedented inflows into Krishna river have submerged the 770 MW power house of Srisailam Hydro Power Project in the wee hours of Saturday.
Anticipating trouble, the officials shutdown both the 770 MW power house on the right bank and also the 900 MW underground power house on the left bank of the reservoir on Friday night itself.
Power generation at Nagarjuna Sagar Project (NSP) was also affected with heavy inflows from Srisailam. Of the eight power generating units in the NSP, the third unit was flooded with water and the officials stopped the generation.
Officials said that water may enter second and fourth units by the night and power generation in these two units would be stopped. If the inflows keep increasing, power generation may affect in all the eight units.
The inflows at NSP reached 15.75 lakh cusecs in the evening and the outflows stood at 12 lakh cusecs. All the 26 gates of the NSP were lifted up to 50 feet. The flood waters started flowing into the 770 MW power house located on the right bank of the Srisailam reservoir just beside the crest gate No:1 late night.
By Saturday morning, water level reached upto five feet and the power house was completely submerged before evening. Soon after water started entering the 770 MW power house on the right bank on Friday, the officials took safety measures to prevent water from entering the 900 MW power house by laying sandbags as bunds at the entrance. Power generation was shutdown and the staff have been asked to vacate by locking the power houses. The officials said that the damage caused by the flooding can be ascertained only after the flood waters recede in the reservoir. ``The water will be pumped out from the power house and take up damage estimations after the situation comes under control. Later, we will take up necessary restoration works,’’ said AP Genco director (hydel projects) Adiseshu.
Located just below the Srisailam dam on the right bank of Krishna river in Kurnool district, the power station generates about 3,000 million units (mu) annually. The power station is equipped with seven units of 110 MW. Another power project equipped with six units of 150 MW is located on the left bank of the project.
The 770 MW power house was commissioned during the period 1982 to 1987 in phased manner.
During the floods in 1998, the power house got completely submerged after a portion of the protection wall got collapsed. As the flood inflow increased to 7.35 lakh cusecs on October 15, the power house including generating units, auxiliary rooms, main control room, generator transformers and other equipment got submerged.
It took about ten days for the AP Genco officials to pump out the water and another two months for the BHELto restore the power project.