Demolition work starts blaze at power station

PLUME: Smoke rises from the former power station

PLUME: Smoke rises from the former power station

First published in News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter covering Abingdon and Wantage, South Oxford and Kennington. Call me on 01865 425431

THE fire at Didcot Power Station that took 22 hours to put out was caused by a spark during demolition work.

Firemen were called to tackle a blaze at the decommissioned station at 4.30pm on Wednesday.

Crews only managed to finally put the fire out at 2pm yesterday.

The fire in a transformer unit was caused by a stray spark from demolition crews cutting through metal piping.

Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue group manager Richard Smith said the job had taken so long because the transformer was housed in a large steel cage.

He said: “The transformer is mainly made of copper but is impregnated with oil.

“The problem we had is getting access to it.”

At the height of the fire, three fire crews were called in.

Mr Smith said: “There was absolutely no danger of it spreading at all, it was completely contained within the decommissioned site.”

Demolition contractors Coleman and Company used their machinery to cut into the steel cage to give firefighters better access. Coleman said it has now launched an investigation into the cause of the fire.

Coal-fired Didcot A power station is currently being demolished, with three of the six cooling towers due to be blown up on Sunday, July 27.

Nick McHugh, spokesman for plant owner npower, said: “There have been no injuries and the fire service managed the incident with support from the onsite team.

“This incident is in a different location to the southern cooling towers.”

The Environment Agency (EA) said it had been liaising with npower and the fire service to ensure any risk to the environment was minimised.

Spokeswoman Elisa Orchard said: “The run-off from fire water was fully contained.

An EA officer attended and will continue to advise the site operator on managing any ongoing risks.”

Didcot A was shut down in March after 42 years to meet an EU directive to cut carbon emissions. Gas-fired Didcot B continues to operate.

npower announced the July cooling towers demolition date on Monday but refused to give an exact time, partly out of health and safety fears if thousands of spectators gather to watch, but also because the demolition is partly dependent on weather conditions on the day.

  • Our top stories:

Oxford pub boss guilty of cocaine plot

Oxford Mail: Oxford Crown Court

7:10am Saturday 29th November 2014

A PUB boss and building company director has been found guilty of conspiring to deal cocaine.

Labour hangs onto a trio of seats in Oxford

Oxford Mail:

7:10am Saturday 29th November 2014

LABOUR has comfortably held three council seats in Oxford by-elections this week.

Paedophile from Banbury jailed after being caught for second time with indecent images of children

Oxford Mail: Oxford Crown Court

7:00am Saturday 29th November 2014

A PAEDOPHILE who downloaded 12,696 indecent images of children, some as young as 18 months, has been jailed.

West Way campaigners disappointed by approval call

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Saturday 29th November 2014

A CAMPAIGN group has been left “disappointed and angry but not surprised” by a report recommending the £100m West Way redevelopment goes ahead.

'Austerity war' killed our brothers, say campaigners

Oxford Mail:

6:30am Saturday 29th November 2014

TWO sisters of men who starved to death after having their benefits slashed united for a desperate plea to find out why their brothers died.

Black Friday: Shopping traffic causing chaos around Bicester as police warn to avoid area

Oxford Mail:

1:59pm Friday 28th November 2014

POLICE have urged people to avoid the Bicester area due to heavy traffic into Bicester Village on Black Friday.

 

Comments

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree