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By Faizel Patel

Senior Digital Journalist


WATCH: Lotus substation gutted by fire, several areas in the dark

Teams are assessing the extent of the damage caused by the fire which has left several areas in the dark, City Power said.


Several areas south of Johannesburg have been plunged into darkness following a fire at the Lotus substation with City Power saying it will take about five days to restore power.

It is understood that the blaze broke out on Sunday evening, leaving Vlakfontein extension 1, 2, 3, Madala Section and Hospital Hills without electricity.

Damages

Teams are assessing the extent of the damage caused by the fire, City Power spokesperson Isaac Mangena said.

The cause of the fire which started at around 10 o’clock is currently not known and investigations are being carried out by the teams and external assessors.”

“The fire which completely damaged the transformer and neutral earth compensators, has been put out and Eskom has also isolated power from their side to allow for safe operations,” Mangena said.

ALSO READ: City Power pleads with communities to protect infrastructure

Estimated time of restoration

Due to the extensive damage to the Lotus substation, City Power will procure a new transformer, cables and terminations in order to restore power, Mangena said.

“While we are working hard to ensure power is restored as quickly as possible, we are looking at the worst-case scenario of five days to complete the repairs and restore power. That is, we are hoping to have the substation up and running in the next five days, although we are working hard to ensure it is back up earlier.”  

“The station has been running on one transformer after the standby transformer burnt last year along with the feeder board,” he said.

Repairs

Mangena has apologised to resident for the outage,

“We are in constant contact with the Councillor and community leaders who are being updated on the progress. We will update customers on the repairs plan on Monday morning,” he said.

Load shedding

Meanwhile, Eskom on Sunday announced that stage 3 load shedding will be implemented at 5 am on Monday and will continue until 4 pm daily, while Stage 4 will be implemented nightly from 4 pm until 5 am on both Monday and Tuesday.

“On Wednesday Stage 2 load shedding will be implemented at 5 am until 4 pm followed by Stage 3 at 4 pm until 5 am. A further update will be published as soon as any significant changes occur,” Eskom spokesperson Sikonathi Mantshantsha said.

ALSO READ: Load shedding to alternate between stages 3 and 4 this week