Nigerians brace-up for more darkness as explosion rocks Escravos gas pipeline again

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Power generation in the country may have hit a fresh snag following the explosion that ruptured the Escravos-Lagos Pipeline on Thursday, even as generation from hydropower plants dropped by 494 megawatts in six days.

There was pandemonium as a heavy explosion rocked the pipeline criss-crossing the Ugbokodo community near the Warri refinery in Okpe Local Government Area of Delta State.

 The incident, which sources said occurred around 4am, forced residents of the community to scamper for safety in the bushes when they discovered that the inferno that resulted from the explosion was advancing towards their homes.

It was gathered that some residents, including children, who fled into the bushes, were still missing as of 4:30pm when one of our correspondents left the community.

The Punch Newspaper reports that the explosion was as a result of leaks from a gas pipeline in the community, which had earlier been reported to the management of the National Petroleum Corporation (NGC).

It took the combined efforts of the men of the fire services of the NGC and the Warri Refining and Petrochemical Company as well as other agencies to put out the fire at about 8am.

This is coming four days after the resumption of gas supply to six power plants – Egbin (Lagos), Omotosho I and II (Ondo), and Olorunsogo I and II and Paras Energy (Ogun) – after the completion of the repair work on the pipeline, which was damaged by a fire incident last week.

The plants did not generate any megawatts of electricity for four straight days until Monday when the Escravos-Lagos Pipeline System, which supplies gas to them, came back on stream.

The nation generates most of its electricity from gas-fired power plants, while output from hydropower plants makes up about 30 per cent of the total generation.

Total electricity generation, which fell slightly to 3,517.5MW as of 6am on Wednesday, January 3, 2018 (the morning after the grid collapse caused by the pipeline fire), rose to 4,102.3MW on Wednesday.

 

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