A large fire has broken out at Eskom’s coal-fired Kendal Power Station in Ogies, Mpumalanga.
Multiple videos posted on Twitter on Friday morning claimed to show a part of the station in flames.
Meijer shared a video of smoke rising from around a large yellow building.
— Alt-Anton (@antonnies) February 12, 2021
Another Twitter user shared a video which appeared to be closer to the fire, revealing flames and smoke engulfing a structure in front of the building.
— Eazy Ed🌐 (@TheEazyEd) February 12, 2021
Conveyer belt caught fire
Eskom confirmed that a fire broke out on one of the conveyor belts taking the ash out of the Kendal Power Station on Friday morning.
“The fire was extinguished and there were no injuries,” the utility stated.
It added that the incident has had no effect on the generation of electricity and the belt would be replaced today.
“The station continues to operate as normal,” Eskom said.
Ramaphosa reveals plans for Eskom
This morning’s fire comes hours after President Cyril Ramaphosa’s State of the Nation Address, in which he outlined plans to restore Eskom to operational and financial health, as well as to accelerate its restructuring process.
Ramaphosa said the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy will soon announce the successful bids for 2,000MW of emergency power to help curb load-shedding.
In addition, the government will procure a further 11,800MW of power from renewable energy, natural gas, battery storage and coal, he said.
Despite these and other measures there will be an electricity supply shortfall of between 4,000 and 6,000 megawatts over the next 5 years, as old coal-fired power stations reach their end of life.
Ramaphosa added this will be addressed by a request for proposals for 2,600MW from wind and solar energy that will be issued in the coming weeks.