DMS holds half-day sessions due to electrical issues

Posted on Nov 20 2019


Crewmembers of the Commonwealth Utilities Corp. work on a power pole at Dandan Middle School yesterday. DMS is currently holding half-day sessions due to issues on the school’s transformer and its power system. (MARC A. VENUS)

Dandan Middle School principal James DLG Sablan is hopeful that classes will return to normal in a matter of weeks. In an interview with Sablan, he said the school started holding half-day sessions since Tuesday due to an ongoing issue with the school’s power system.

He said based on the Public School System and the Commonwealth Utilities Corp.’s inspections, a downed transformer caused the issues on the power systems. Sablan said that buildings B, D, and E, have lost power leaving DMS to only have three classroom buildings with full power.

“We have been dealing with this problem for about three to four weeks, where the buildings would have partial power and would lose power once a certain amount of electricity is used up,” Sablan said. Once the buildings lost power and a sudden surge of students asking to be released early, DMS staff decided that holding half-day session was the best option.

Sablan added the inspection from both PSS and CUC found that a transformer malfunctioned after the previous typhoon that passed the CNMI.

Sablan said the half-day sessions will continue until CUC completes its groundwork. Sablan said a private contractor hired by PSS would take over with the wiring and connection to the school’s power, and once their work is complete, classes can be held in normal hours.

The name of the contractor was not specified.

Sablan said with the temporary implementation of half-day class sessions, classes will end at noon. The implementation began yesterday in order to give the school enough time to disseminate the information to parents and guardians.

Sablan said he is thankful for CUC’s rapid response after the school’s inquiry for support, and is hopeful the CUC crew currently working on the school’s transformer and power lines can have it completed in due time.

Marc Venus | Reporter
Marc Venus is the Saipan Tribune's public health and education reporter. He has an associate degree in Applied Sciences in Computer Applications and is working on his bachelor’s degree at the Northern Marianas College. Contact him at

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