An explosion occurred at the Kisköre hydropower plant early Monday afternoon, the Hungarian Electrical Works (MVM) reported. Eight people were injured in the accident, four of them seriously.
The reason for the accident was unknown yesterday, but it has since been revealed that the explosion happened on the premises of Tiszavíz Hydropower Ltd. (Tiszavíz Vízerőmű Kft.), during the planned annual maintenance of one of the turbines.
On Tuesday morning, György Kóbor, Chairman and CEO of the MVM Group, and Csaba Kiss, Deputy Chief Production Officer, also arrived at the site to learn about the accident, according to MVM. They stressed that the operation of the other three turbines was not affected and that they are running smoothly.
Csilla Magyar, mayor of Kisköre, also confirmed in her Facebook post that there was an “accident at the power plant, and firefighters, ambulances, and police have done and are doing their job.”
With an internal capacity of 28 megawatts, the Kisköre hydroelectric power plant, built as part of the Kisköre water pipeline and commissioned in 1974, is
Hungary’s largest hydroelectric power plant. The amount of electricity generated at the plant is about half of the electricity produced from hydropower in Hungary, which provides enough energy to supply 40-45,000 households with average consumption needs per year.
Firefighters rescued four people from the basement of the hydroelectric power station, where ambulances awaited. In total, however, eight people were treated. Four suffered serious burns, and four others only minor burns. Pál Győrfi, spokesman for the National Ambulance Service (OMSZ), said that the four seriously injured are all men, while the lightly injured include three men and one woman. The latter suffered minor bruises.
Of the more seriously injured, one was taken to Honvéd Hospital, two to Debrecen, and one to Miskolc. Those with minor injuries were treated at the Ferenc Markhot Hospital in Eger, reported the HEOL. According to RTL Klub, one of the seriously injured is the head of the establishment, who was taken to hospital by medical helicopter under deep sedation. The Central Hospital of Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén County said that the man was admitted with first- and second-degree burns, his general condition is satisfactory and his examinations are ongoing.
Featured image: the Kisköre Hydropower Plant in 2017. Photo by Zsolt Czeglédi/MTI