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By Faizel Patel

Senior Digital Journalist

Eldorado Park substation fire an act of sabotage – Mpho Phalatse

Johannesburg executive mayor Mpho Phalatse said the blaze that gutted the Eldorado Park substation was a deliberate act of sabotage.

The executive mayor of the City of Johannesburg Mpho Phalatse has said the blaze that gutted the Eldorado Park substation (now dubbed the “City Power fire”) was a deliberate act of sabotage.

Several areas were plunged into darkness on Friday after a blaze gutted the substation.

Phalatse visited the substation on Friday where she was briefed by City Power technicians on the extent of the damage caused by the City Power fire.

“At approximately 5 o’ clock this morning, the Eldorado Park Substation sustained fire damage in what we suspect to be a case of sabotage on our economic infrastructure. City Power technicians are working around the clock to restore power. I’ve instructed the city’s group forensic and investigation services unit to accelerate the rollout of the strategy to stop these attacks on the city’s economic infrastructure.”

Phalatse also said the Johannesburg Metro Police Department (JMPD) had been deployed to the area to prevent cable theft.

 Eldorado Park substation fire
Screengrab of the video of a fire at Eldorado Park substation | Picture: Screenshot

Restoration of Power

Phalatse said City Power Technicians are working around the clock to restore power.

“We estimate that there’ll be restoration by Monday, worst-case scenario by Wednesday.”

Meanwhile, City Power said mop-up operations would start on Friday evening.

“The work will include clearing the rubble, removing 40,000 litres of oil from the damaged transformer and cleaning up any environmental hazard from the spillage. Structural Engineers have been called to assess the Feederboard room structure which is badly damaged.  We will do the repairs and rewire for protection. We are testing one transformer to have one working, and the standby one.”

City Power said power has already been restored to several areas after the City Power fire.

“We have already restored the rest of the substations that were affected by this fire, including Nancefield, Nirvana which were restored by 5pm after clearing the transmission lines of carbon smoke. The restoration of Nancefield and Nirvana ensured that some sections of Eldorado Park 1, 3, and 9, Eldos Proper, Goudkoppies Landfill, Lenasia Ext 1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9,10, 11, Thembelihle, Nancefield, are on.”  

City Power has appealed to the residents for patience and cooperation as teams do their work and ensure restoration happens as planned.

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