THE National Electrification Administration (NEA) has ordered electric cooperatives (ECs) to ensure continuous power supply for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine cold storage facilities and administration sites.

In a memorandum posted on its website last week, the NEA told ECs to conduct jointly with building administrators inspections of facilities and to go over contingency plans for restoring electricity and operating on back-up power.

“Per usual industry practice, the building or facility owners usually install back-up especially when critical loads are involved. If this is not the case, please coordinate with your LGU (local government unit) for possible assistance on the provision of back-up power,” the NEA said in its memo.

The NEA also said that ECs with histories of frequent outages must have maintenance teams on call.

The memo, signed by NEA Administrator Edgardo R. Masongsong on May 17, was issued shortly after Energy Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi received news of a power outage in North Cotabato which caused the spoilage of nearly 350 vials of vaccine.

“I reiterate my earlier directive to our power stakeholders to ensure reliable and stable electric power supply to support COVID-19 vaccine cold storage and healthcare facilities,” Mr. Cusi said in a May 15 statement distributed on Viber. — Angelica Y. Yang