An explosion and fire has forced the temporary shutdown of a major electric power plant in eastern Iowa. MidAmerican Energy spokesman Allan Urlis says the Louisa Generating Station in Muscatine is now off-line.
Urlis says an auxiliary transformer failed about 5:20 Wednesday night and led to the explosion and fire at the transformer which sits right outside the plant. He says damage to the plant appears minimal but that’s still being assessed.
Urlis says fire crews responded immediately. He says the fire was out shortly after 6 P.M. No one was hurt and customers’ power was not effected. Urlis says other power plants around the state are picking up the slack while the Muscatine facility is shut down. He says MidAmerican has other electric generating stations in: Council Bluffs, south of Sioux City, near Des Moines, Bettendorf, Ottumwa, and the wind projects in northwest, north-central and west-central regions of Iowa.
Urlis says the cause of the malfunction was mechanical and foul play is not suspected. He says: “It is unusual for this sort of circumstance to occur. We’re not sure exactly what happened at this point. We’re assessing damage. We’ll investigate to determine what exactly failed inside the transformer that led to the malfunction, led to the explosion.” Urlis says no customers lost power due to the incident.