Another Breakdown in Nuevitas' Power Plant Unit 6 Disconnects it from the System

Saturday, June 1, 2024 by Isabella Rojas

Another Breakdown in Nuevitas' Power Plant Unit 6 Disconnects it from the System
Workers of the Nuevitas Thermoelectric Plant repair the breakdown - Image © Facebook / UNE

The number 6 unit of the "Diez de Octubre" thermal power plant (CTE) in Nuevitas, Camagüey, has once again been disconnected from the national electric grid (SEN) due to another detected malfunction in its cooling system. This was reported on Friday by the Unión Eléctrica de Cuba (UNE)

According to the state-owned company, the detected leak in a pipe of the cooling system caused the "block to go out of service around 1:00 a.m. this morning [Friday]." Additionally, they indicated that "other maintenance work is also being carried out as needed" and anticipated the affected block's return to service during the "late evening" of Friday.

On Saturday, in its daily SEN report, the company led by Alfredo López Valdés did not list Unit 6 of Nuevitas among those currently undergoing repairs or maintenance. Nor did they report its synchronization with the SEN or update the status of the detected leak.

The "transparency" is glaringly absent in the communications from the state-run socialist company, further eroding the already minimal credibility of its data and statements. After years of governance under the so-called “continuity” and its communication policy, spearheaded by a weary and increasingly mediocre Ideological Department of the Communist Party of Cuba (PCC), Cubans are left uncertain whether the inhumane blackouts inflicted upon them are due to fuel shortages or the collapse of the national electric infrastructure.

In mid-May, Unit 6 of Nuevitas went out of service less than 24 hours after being synchronized with the SEN and following a 77-day maintenance shutdown, which, according to official press, "stood out for its preparation, planning, control, and the utilization of available resources."

"It is normal for the machine to need to go out of service at some point to correct any parameter that does not show satisfactory behavior as planned. This happens not only in Cuba but in any country in the world," a UNE executive explained days later.

The Cuban regime wants the population to consider it “normal” for a thermal power plant to have leaks in its pipes after 77 days of maintenance, during which "highly complex and precise procedures" were applied. While a single fault requiring a shutdown might be understandable, two or three in such a short time suggest either the quality of the work was subpar or that the Nuevitas CTE has outlived its useful life.

To add insult to UNE's injury, this Saturday they reported that the Antonio Guiteras thermal power plant in Matanzas went out of service for approximately 30 hours due to an oil leak in the generator's lubrication system.

Maintenance Issues at Cuban Power Plants

Given the recurring problems at Cuban power plants, many questions arise regarding the root causes and potential solutions. Below are some frequently asked questions and their answers to provide more clarity.

Why do power plants in Cuba frequently experience breakdowns?

Frequent breakdowns can be attributed to aging infrastructure, inadequate maintenance, and a lack of resources and proper planning.

What steps are being taken to address these issues?

The state-owned company, UNE, claims to be conducting repair and maintenance work. However, the effectiveness and transparency of these efforts are questionable.

How do these breakdowns affect the Cuban population?

These breakdowns result in frequent and prolonged blackouts, severely impacting daily life and economic activities in Cuba.

Are there any plans to upgrade the power infrastructure in Cuba?

While there have been announcements of plans to upgrade infrastructure, the implementation and progress of these plans remain unclear and slow.

© CubaHeadlines 2024

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