No risk of load-shedding after Kendal power station fire: Eskom

Stage 2 load-shedding will be rolled out across the country on Friday.
Stage 2 load-shedding will be rolled out across the country on Friday.
Image: 123RF/choneschones

Power utility Eskom has assured the public there will be no load-shedding after a fire at the Kendal power station in Mpumalanga at the weekend.

On Monday, Eskom said units 2 and 3 at the station will be returned to service early this week and unit 1 will be back in November.

“While Eskom will be forced to increase diesel consumption, we do not anticipate that any load-shedding will be implemented as a result of the incident. We urge members of the public to continue using electricity sparingly to assist the country,” it said.

On Saturday Eskom said unit 1 tripped due to a failure of a generator transformer. Further investigation revealed that it had caught fire.

“The fire damaged the cables to the main cooling water system on the west side of the power station. Unit 2 and unit 3 experienced loss of vacuum and were shut down under controlled conditions,” said Eskom.

The power utility said no injuries were sustained during the incident as all personnel were evacuated. 

Last month, unit 4 at the Medupi power station exploded, causing extensive damage to the generator. The explosion sparked fears of load-shedding but spokesperson Sikonathi Mantshantsha told TimesLIVE that while the damage was extensive, there would be no load-shedding.

“Load-shedding is never from a single incident unless we have suffered setbacks at other plants,” he said. He added the power utility would launch an investigation into the cause of the explosion and quantify the cost.