Ashort circuit at underground hydroelectric power station situated at Srisailam’s dam left bank in Telangana led to a fire early Friday, trapping at least eight maintenance personnel of Telangana Genco.
The fire was followed by an explosion in unit 4 of the power station. Reportedly, panel boards had caught fire due to the short circuit.The smoke from the massive blaze has engulfed all six units of the power station from zero level to the service bay, hampering rescue operations.
According to officials, there were 17 people on duty at the time of the accident, out of which eight have been rescued so far. The rescue personnel tried to enter the power station units at least thrice but were unable to enter because of the thick smoke. Teams from the National Disaster Response Force have also joined the rescue operation.
Telangana Cabinet Minister Jagadish Reddy, who visited the accident site, said it was an unfortunate incident as these kind of accidents in hydro power plants are very rare.
“There’s heavy smoke which is making rescue operations difficult. Even fire personnel have become unconscious while trying to rescue people inside. NDRF teams are also helping. Luckily, the drivers carrying firemen have masks- so that has saved them. We have asked help from Singareni Collieries workers since they work in underground conditions.”