Persistent heavy downpours in and around Hwange have disrupted coal mining in the area, resulting in failure by local mines to meet Hwange Power Station’s monthly demand of 90 000 tonnes required for power generation, an official said on Friday.
Most of the country’s coal supplies comes from Hwange, and several companies are involved in the commodity’s extraction.
The bulk of the output is used in thermal power generation at Hwange Power Station, and only a limited amount is exported.
In an interview, Zambezi Gas and Coal operations manager, Menard Makota said heavy rains pouring persistently in the region had affected mining operations, resulting in cut backs in production.
Some of the mines flooded, forcing the companies to invest in water pumps to be able to pump out the water from underground.
As a result, Makota said mining companies were not able to meet Hwange Power Station’s coal demand of 9 000 tonnes per month.
“This year we received more than normal rainfall. We once recorded 90 millimeters of rain in three hrs, meaning the rain was very heavy,” he said.
“In the past four months, we have purchased water pumps for about US$300 000 which will be used to pump out the water. Our men in the pits are working tirelessly so that we do not have any problems emanating from the rain,” he said. – New Ziana