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Ekurhuleni officials work to restore power to Benoni after station explodes

The municipality says it has another transformer its currently testing to possibly restore electricity.

The Rynfield substation in Ekurhuleni exploded this morning along 2 other mini substations at around the same time.Picture: Ziyanda Ngcobo/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The Ekurhuleni Municipality says officials have now cleared the scene of an explosion at one of the City's substations.

It's confirmed that Rynfield, along with two mini substations, blew up at approximately the same time just after 5am this morning.

Most of the northern parts of Benoni have been without electricity since then and it's not clear when power will be restored.

Ekurhuleni Mayoral Spokesperson Zweli Dlamini says one of the transformers at the Rynfield substation blew up this morning, which then caused two other mini substations to explode in Crystal Park.

"We are trying to identify where the fire started. Did it start at one of the mini subs and then affected this one."

In the meantime the municipality says it has another transformer its currently testing to possibly restore electricity.

Dlamini says, "There is an alternative transformer on site which we are going to test and see if we cannot reactivate immediately."

He says if the transformer is given the go-ahead from electricians, power could be restored.

"If the alternative transformer is found not have any technical problems, then we can look at the possibility of power rotation among the affected areas."

A frail care centre in the area has been flagged as a priority because there are patients who depend on electricity for treatment.

Meanwhile, Ekurhuleni Mayor Mondli Gungubele says 70 percent of the areas affected by triple blasts at substations in the northern Benoni areas will hopefully be restored by midday tomorrow.

The municipality also says water reservoirs in the region may be affected by the power outage and tankers are on standby if that happenss.

Gungubele says power has been restored to areas that get electricity from the Benburg substation that tripped as a protective measure.

"The main power station switched everything off in reaction to the disaster. When the disaster was cut off from the main power station, the normal areas resupplied again. That's how electricity was restored to other areas."