A contractor linked to an incident of sabotage at Eskom’s Camden Energy station was arrested on Tuesday, following investigations by the state energy utility.
The employee was nabbed for deliberately eradicating the bearing oil drain plug from the bearing, final week, which brought about the oil burners to journey repeatedly, Eskom mentioned in an announcement on Wednesday.
The employee was employed by a upkeep firm contracted to the ability station.
“This malicious act brought about all of the oil to empty out from the bearing, thus damaging the bearing which, in flip, prevented the mills from working optimally. Camden Unit 4 subsequently tripped after shedding all of the mills,” it mentioned.
A case was instantly opened at a police station in Ermelo following the incident, which occurred on 10 November 2022.
“The proof obtained, and the confession made by the perpetrator revealed the plug was deliberately eliminated to trigger the journey. This act of sabotage would make sure that his employer is awarded further upkeep and restore jobs on the energy station,” Eskom mentioned about its findings.
The ability utility, which has been more and more implementing load shedding, lately arrange a particular investigation staff made up of the Eskom Safety Crew and the South African Police Companies, to probe situations of potential sabotage and uncover prison networks.
“It’s disheartening to search out that a few of our contractors are unscrupulous, have malicious intent and are keen to plunge the nation into additional load shedding at a time when the electrical energy grid is very constrained,” Advocate Karen Pillay, normal supervisor for safety at Eskom, mentioned.
“We have now all the time suspected that a few of our upkeep contractors and workers are behind these acts of sabotage,” Pillay mentioned.
“We will constantly work with the legislation enforcement companies to deliver these insiders to e-book and make sure that justice is meted out, however most significantly that these with related tendencies throughout Eskom are arrested and faraway from the organisation.”
The most recent arrest follows that of two contractor truck drivers final week, after they have been caught in possession of stolen coal at Kendal Energy Station.
“Coal theft is a extremely organised prison exercise and syndicates concerned are being enriched by way of the proceeds derived from the commerce in stolen coal. Eskom continues to lose billions of rands as a result of misappropriation of coal and related commodities, which straight impacts manufacturing,” mentioned Pillay on the time.
“There are a number of illicit coal stockyards and dump websites within the province which might be recipients of the stolen coal. Eskom will make sure that the perpetrators face the complete may of the legislation.”