Transmission tower collapses as fire hits compound on SLEX


Traffic was heavy on the South Luzon Expressway (SLEx) for several hours on Wednesday morning after a fire in Muntinlupa City caused a transmission tower beside the toll road to collapse.

The blaze which started at 8:48 a.m. broke out in a 400-square-meter residential compound occupied by around 80 families near the northbound Alabang exit plaza, said city public information officer Tez Navarro, quoting local fire officials.

No one was reported killed or injured in the fire which reached the second alarm before it was put out at 9:15 a.m.

The heat from the flames, however, caused the collapse of the Biñan-Muntinlupa 230-kilovolt transmission tower of the National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP) which loomed over the compound.

With the tower and its cable wires leaning precariously over the expressway, the northbound and southbound lanes of the Alabang viaduct were temporarily closed to all vehicles.

As a result, heavy traffic was reported on SLEx, with the tailend reaching the Southwoods exit in Biñan, Laguna.

In a statement, the NGCP said the heat from the blaze weakened the tower’s foundation but there was no power interruption due to the agency’s line redundancy system.

According to the official Twitter account of SLEx, the Alabang viaduct was opened to traffic at 10:32 a.m.

The northbound Alabang exit plaza, however, remains closed due to the collapsed transmission tower. —Dexter Cabalza

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