Home NATIONWIDE Meralco Intensifies Anti-Urban Blight Campaign to Promote Public Safety

Meralco Intensifies Anti-Urban Blight Campaign to Promote Public Safety

SAFETY AS A TOP PRIORITY. Meralco linecrews are actively conducting wire-clearing operations across its franchise area as part of its public safety campaign.

Beyond its responsibility to power homes and communities, the Manila Electric Company (Meralco) also plays a vital role in promoting public safety as the country’s largest distribution utility.

The Manuel V. Pangilinan-led utility recently ramped up its campaign against urban blight, particularly in high-density areas, to ensure the integrity of its distribution facilities and prevent accidents that may be caused by overloading of unauthorized wire attachments.

For Meralco, close coordination with other stakeholders – including local government units (LGUs), and telco and cable companies – are crucial to the success of the program.

In a recent Anti-Dangling and Unauthorized Wire Attachments Operations, Meralco teamed up with the Manila City LGU to address urban blight concerns.

As the Philippine capital marks its 453rd founding anniversary, Meralco reaffirms its commitment to promoting public safety among Manileños on top of delivering reliable, stable, and continuous electricity service at the least cost possible.


FOR THE PUBLIC. Meralco works with different local government units (LGUs) and government agencies such as the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) for its Anti-Dangling and Unauthorized Wire Attachments Operations to address urban blight concerns.

Recently, the Metro Manila Council (MMC) passed a resolution urging LGUs in the capital region to pass ordinances that would regulate the installation of telecommunication and electric wires in a bid to address dangling cables or “spaghetti” wires.

The move is a welcome development for Meralco, which has long been conducting wire-clearing operations in coordination with various LGUs, and telco and cable companies.

With foreign attachments identified as one of the most common causes of pole troubles, Meralco has been pleading to cable and telco companies to coordinate with the distribution utility and follow the process for wire attachment application process. This is to ensure and maintain the distribution facilities
capacity to support these foreign attachments, therefore avoiding overloading and untoward incidents.

“Unauthorized wire attachments to our poles pose operational risks and endanger lives. We are appealing to telco and cable companies to secure the necessary approvals before attaching to our facilities,” Meralco Vice President and Head of Corporate Communications Joe R. Zaldarriaga said.

In Manila City alone, Meralco has conducted various wire-clearing operations to address urban blight. Recent operations were in Binondo, Quiapo, and Ermita where Meralco crews did not only address dangling and idle wires but also corrected leaning poles, and conducted maintenance works to ensure the integrity of distribution facilities.

TRASLACION 2024. Meralco together with the Manila LGU implemented the Anti-Urban Blight campaign, in preparation for the Feast of the Black Nazarene to remove dangling wires along the Traslacion route for the safety of the devotees.

Prior to the return of the Black Nazarene Procession in January this year, Meralco immediately heeded the request of the Manila City LGU to conduct anti-urban blight operations along the route of the Traslacion.

“Meralco is one with the government in advocating for public safety. Rest assured that we will continue to coordinate with LGUs and telco and cable companies across our franchise area on this,” Zaldarriaga said.

Aside from LGUs, Meralco is also working closely with other government agencies such as the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) in addressing urban blight concerns. Similar operations have also been conducted in other areas across Meralco’s franchise such as in the cities of Marikina, Pasig, Quezon, the municipality of Pateros, portions of Bulacan, Dasmarinas in Cavite, and Binan in Laguna with other areas in the pipeline.


UPGRADING THE FACILITIES. Meralco linecrews continuously conducts preventive maintenance within its franchise area to improve the quality and the reliability of the electricity service.

In one of the operations, BFP Fire Superintendent Fire Marshal and Pasig City Elaine Baylon-Evangelista emphasized the importance of company’s public safety campaign, considering that overloaded poles and dangling wires can cause traffic and fire incidents.

Based on the joint inspection by Meralco and BFP, Baylon-Evangelista revealed that majority of the dangling and idle wires connected to the distribution utility’s poles are unauthorized telco and cable wires or foreign attachments.

“The community will benefit from this initiative, as it makes the streets more pleasant to look at, would also help preserve the integrity of electric poles and of course, guarantee the safety of the residents,” she said in Tagalog.

In Manila City, residents are the ones who stand to benefit the most from the strengthened campaign against urban blight.

During a wire-clearing operation in Ermita, Joseph de Hitta, a security guard working in a mall in the city, thanked Meralco linecrews for removing low-sagging and idle wires, saying it would lessen the worries of people crossing the street.

“The people walking on the streets no longer have to worry that the pole might fall because of the heavy wires attached to it. It’s good that Meralco regularly fixes their facilities,” he said in Tagalog.

Evelyn Mapilisan a sari-sari store owner shared De Hitta’s sentiments, saying the correction of the overloaded electric poles has helped ease her worries of possible accidents.

“I no longer have to worry of the possibility that a pole might fall and hit me. Now I can talk to my neighbors on the streets without worrying about our safety,” she said.

Street vendor Mikaela Cao meanwhile noted how the wire-clearing operations would benefit motorists as well.

“This is for our safety. Before even motorcycles and vehicles have to slow down because of the spaghetti wires. Now, they can pass by without having to worry of these things,” she said in Tagalog.

With public safety as a priority for Meralco, the distribution utility will continue to be a reliable partner of the government in promoting and advocating the cause to continuously empower communities.

“We will continue to do more of these because we in Meralco put a premium on safety—not just on our employees but on the customers and communities we serve,” Zaldarriaga said.

“Ensuring public safety is a shared responsibility, so we also ask for the everyone’s support and cooperation by reporting incidents of dangling wires to authorities,” he concluded.