Locals assist the MLM

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Kate-Merie Ferreira

On Saturday afternoon 28 May at approximately 14:50, thick smoke could be seen coming from the transformer on the corner of Kotze – and Smit Street.

Quick thinking employees of the businesses in the area used fire extinguishers to try and keep the damage to a minimum and the Mkhondo Local Municipality was alerted.

The transformer that burned caused a power outage in Kotze -, Smit -, Pretorius -, Burger – and Du Toit Street. In an attempt to restore electricity to these areas, the Electrical Department attempted to reroute some of the cables but, this caused the areas to experience low voltage. In some places the voltage was so low that businesses had to start their generators, because the power that they were receiving from the town was not even enough to keep the lights on.

The MLM announced that they were still looking for a replacement for the transformer and no time frame could be given as to when that would happen.

PG Bison, in collaboration with the Mkhondo Business Chamber, decided to assist the MLM. PG Bison had a transformer that they were not utilising at the time and decided to lend it to the Mkhondo Local Municipality until they could find a permanent replacement or till the repairs are completed, so that the businesses and residents of town did not have to suffer any longer.

The Business Chamber organised for the transformer to be transported into town and PG Bison also used their crane to offload it. PG Bison also organised for their qualified technicians to be available to assist the MLM with the installation of the transformer.

With the help of local businesses, the transformer was installed and power to the affected areas was fully restored at approximately 16:15 on Tuesday afternoon 31 May.

Without assistance, it was likely that the MLM would still be battling with the repair of the transformer.

The residents of Piet Retief would like to thank PG Bison and the Business Chamber for the huge part that they played and for assisting the Mkhondo Local Municipality.