India: Accident at Power Plant Blast at Government-Owned Thermal Power Plant Kills 36 People in India

Editor: Alexander Stark

NTPC Unchahar Station, a coal-fired power plant in the north Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, is recovering after an industrial accident took place on November 1, 2017 in which 36 people have been killed.

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New Delhi/India — Around 80 people were rushed to NTPC hospital, most of them were discharged after giving first-aid, the company announced on their website, adding that about 10 persons with serious injuries have been referred to nearby hospitals and to Lucknow to provide immediate treatment.

The company reports in a statement that "there was sudden abnormal sound" and "there was opening (...) from which hot flue gases and steam escaped affecting the people working around the area".

An enquiry has been set up by NTPC Management to investigate the reasons for the accident. The Power Minister met Shri Gurdeep Singh, CMD and senior officials of NTPC at the site and visited the injured persons admitted at District hospital at Rai Bareilly and Lucknow.

An expert committee of top company executives is to examine the possible cause of the incident which led to the failure of the Economizer Section in the Boiler resulting in the exhaust of flue gases. The expert committee is headed by senior most Executive Director, Sh. S.K. Roy along with two General Managers who will submit a report within 30 days. Additionally, multiple teams of NTPC and experts from equipment manufacturer BHEL are analyzing the cause of the incidence.

Unit 6 (500 MW) of the plant was shutdown after the accident; however the other units of the station are operating normally, the owner said. NTPC Unchahar has a total capacity of 1,550 MW consisting of 5 units of 210 MW and one unit of 500 MW. Out of the 5 units of 210 MW, Unit 1 is under planned overhauling — the other units are in operation.