Friday 27 January 2023

Without power less than 10 times last year

87% of the interruptions to electrical service were caused by voltage problems in the service; CoopeSantos and CoopeGuanacaste customers were the ones that reported the highest number of outages

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27 January 2023 - At The Banks - BCCR

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QCOSTARICA – Power outages in Costa Rica are common, some areas affected more than others, but in general, homes and businesses were without electricity on average 10 times all of last year, despite the increase in teleworking and virtual classes as a containment measure against the Covid-19 pandemic.

That is the sum of the report by the Autoridad Reguladora de los Servicios Públicos (Aresep) – regulating authority on Public Services – that measured the average number of failures of each service provider, including the companies of Grupo ICE, Cooperativas Eléctricas and other entities such as ESPH and Jasec.

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According to the analysis, in 2020 the average frequency of perceived service interruption was 10 hours and 42 minutes.

The majority of the outages were failures to equipment, electrical voltage problems, and tree branches or animals making contact with power lines in the distribution network.

About 12% of the cause of service interruptions was due to human activity, and of these, the collision of vehicles against power lines was the most important of the incidents.

Adjustment problems to regulate the voltage in distribution transformers were the main cause of non-conformities in the services.

The data is derived from the electrical quality evaluation program carried out by Aresep according to international standards, with two indicators: the average frequency and the average interruption time experienced by each electrical service, considering interruptions greater than five minutes.

Suppliers ranking

The Aresep measured the average failures of each service provider during 2020, based on the frequency of interruptions experienced per subscriber:

  • CoopeAlfaroRuiz, an average of 2.3 interruptions
  • Jasec 4.9
  • ESPH 8.2
  • Coopelesca 9.2
  • ICE (direct) 9.5
  • CNFL (ICE affiliatate) 10.2
  • CoopeSantos 11.4
  • CoopeGuanacaste 12.6
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