Explosion leads to blackout

2015-04-30 16:15

RESIDENTS and businesses in Odendaalsrus’s township of Kutlwanong are livid after an explosion at Eskom’s substation that resulted in a disruption in electricity supply across the township.

The unpleasant situation which befell them on Monday, 30 March, and which is still continuing, has left them non-plussed.

The entire township experienced a total blackout and people were forced to make fire outside their homes to cook and to use candles to light up their homes as the technical team of the trouble-ridden power supplier company Eskom struggled to repair burnt indoor switchgears following the explosion.

Zanda Matoti, Eskom’s spokesperson, said there had been an explosion at the Kutlwanong substation, resulting in the medium-voltage indoor switchgears catching fire.

“One substation transformer, as well as some cables, were damaged in the process. The Fire Department was called out to extinguish the fire. The Eskom technical team had to wait for the smoke to subside before they could start working and they started cleaning carbon late on Monday,” said Matoti.

Power supply was restored partly at midnight the following day, on Tuesday, (31/03). However, some residential sectors were still without electricity on Thursday (02/04), as dicovered after an investigation by Express Goldfields andamp; NFS.

“Eskom’s technical team is working tirelessly to remedy the situation and restore the supply to customers who are without supply,” said Matoti.

Essentials such as candles, matches, paraffin and gas cylinders, including wood, were selling like hotcakes. Small businesses like tuck-shops were also using candles to light their premises.

As for the family of Makhetloane, who reside in K7, Kutlwanong, the unpleasant event was nostalgic, reminding them of the days when coal was a source of energy to cook meals and make fire outside the home. During the three-day period of darkness they sat around a cosy fire as a family together with friends. In the crisp dark evening around the glow of a homemade fire they enjoyed roasting corn on the sparkling golden hues of the fire – a perfect setting for good story-telling

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