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Eskom and the DMR have launched investigations into the tragic incident involving 13 employees at Ingula pumped storage construction site, writes Vicky Sidler.

Six construction employees lost their lives and seven required medical treatment at Eskom’s Ingula pumped storage construction site near Ladysmith, KwaZulu-Natal. Of the seven injured, three were treated and discharged and the other four are still in the Intensive Care Unit in hospital.

The top gantry (platform) which is on wheels started moving down the incline, hit a monorail and two other gantries which impacted the people on the way down. The tunnel did not collapse. The site underground works has been evacuated, and the rest of the site has been cleared of any workers while investigations are underway.

“This incident is both unfortunate and tragic. Our first priority is to ensure the care of the deceased, their families, our colleagues in hospital and their loved ones. Our hearts go out to them, but we are also determined to find out why it happened and how to safeguard against it happening again,” said Eskom’s Chief Executive Brian Dames.

Safety remains one of Eskom’s key priorities in its quest to become a high-performance organisation. Eskom is constantly working with suppliers, customers and contractors to integrate safety, health and environmental processes into their operations.

“I would like to express our sincere condolences to the families and wish the seven (7) surviving workers a speedy recovery. With thousands of workers on our power-plant construction sites at Medupi, Kusile and Ingula, this incident clearly requires a renewed focus on safety so that we do not only bring new generating capacity online for the country, but that we do so safely,” stated Eskom Chairman Zola Tsotsi.

Featured, Eskom, DMR, Ingula, Ladysmith, KwaZulu-Natal, Brian Dames, Zola Tsotsi, Medupi, Kusile, Ingula

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