Covid-19 positive Eskom employee placed in isolation, work area disinfected

SA’s Koeberg nuclear plant. File Picture: Gallo Images

Eskom says of the seven employees that were tested for Covid-19 following contact with the infected person, six results have been received and they are all Covid-19 negative.

Eskom has said that the employee who tested positive for Covid-19 at Koeberg power station has been placed in isolation and the said employee’s work area has been “cleaned and disinfected”.

In a statement on Wednesday, the power utility said it was not clear where the employee contracted the virus.

The entity said the employee in question had consulted a doctor after feeling sick and that once they tested positive for the virus they “immediately reported” their results to their manager and were placed in isolation, “in accordance with Eskom’s policy on containing the pandemic”.

“Eskom observed all protocols for dealing with the pandemic and immediately contacted those employees who were in contact with him.

“Those employees who were in close contact with him were immediately placed on precautionary isolation,” the entity said.

Eskom said that in line with its Covid-19 guidance and policies, it cleaned and disinfected the area in which the virus-positive employee worked.

“Of the seven employees that were tested for Covid-19 following contact with the infected person, thus far six results have been received and they are all Covid-19 negative.”

The power utility said it was assisting the infected employee “with undergoing treatment” and that it had thus far taken all the precautionary measures to prevent the virus from coming into its places of work.

The entity said it welcomed any independent review of the management of the incident by the departments of labour and of health.

Eskom said there were no other reported cases of Covid-19 among its employees.

“These employees, who work in other operations and power stations other than Koeberg, are also members of the general South African population that is exposed to the current pandemic.”

The entity said it took seriously its responsibility to protect its employees and had put “strict infection prevention and containment measures in place”.

The utility said its workplaces were cleaned and disinfected regularly and Covid-19 prevention measures were put in place before the national lockdown.

“These include testing employees for abnormal body temperature before they enter the workplace, providing hand sanitisers throughout the facilities and providing protective equipment such as masks to all employees.”

Meanwhile, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) in the Western Cape accused the management at Koeberg power station of compromising employees’ safety after the employee tested positive.

(Compiled by Makhosandile Zulu)

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