Diamond Plant Catches Fire

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ORANJEMUND

The Number Three Plant’s Main Control Electrical Supply Centre at Namdeb caught fire during the early hours of Tuesday.

The control centre is the main source of electrical supply to the plant.

Although the plant was not damaged, the electrical supply infrastructure has been extensively damaged, said Ndeshi Hangula-Shikwambi, the corporate communications manager at Namdeb.

The cause of the fire is not known at present, but fire experts and assessors are investigating the cause.

According to Mr Paul Sparks, acting general manager of Namdeb, no one was injured in the fire and no significant environmental impact occurred.

The No. 3-Plant, which has been operational since 1977, is located in Mining Area One and employs 136 people.

The plant produces approximately 280 000 carats per annum which equates to 12% of Namdeb’s planned diamond production for 2007.

Interim measures are in place to relocate some of the production to adjacent plants and affected employees will be re-deployed accordingly.

Initial estimates are that the plant will be fully operational within four months.

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