Report assigns blame for Russian accident

A report by a government watchdog on the Aug. 17 explosion that paralyzed Russia’s Sayano-Shushenskaya hydroelectric power plant, claiming 75 lives, says former chief executive of national electricity company Unified Energy Systems (UES) Anatoly Chubais is partially to blame for the conditions that led to the tragedy.

Last month, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin ordered an investigation of the accident at Russia’s largest hydropower plant, saying any attempt to skimp on safety would be deemed “criminal.” (HydroWorld 9/25/09)

The report, prepared by industrial safety watchdog Rostekhnadzor and obtained by Interfax, partially blames such conditions on five others, including Deputy Energy Minister Vyacheslav Sinyugin.

Boris Vainzikher, general director of the TGK-1 generating company and a former technical director of UES, and Valentin Stafiyevsky, head of the RusHydro generating company’s South division, are also on the list.

The other two are Anatoly Dyakov, corresponding member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, who in 2000 headed the commission that gave the go-ahead to the plant being put in service, and Igor Yusufov, today a senior diplomat and between 2001 and 2004 energy minister.

Rostekhnadzor also named 18 members of the plant’s staff whose duties, the watchdog claimed, had included accident prevention. Among them is RusHydro acting chief executive Vasily Zubakin.
The list also includes six other top managers of RusHydro.

They are Boris Bogush, head of the company’s Production Business Unit, Timur Yusupov, his deputy and operations director, Nikolai Dorofeyev, head of the technical inspection department, Timur Khaziakhmetov, chief of the operations and modes management department, Roman Klochkov, head of the department for the planning of repairs, technological re-equipment and modernization, and Alexander Toloshinov, head of the Siberia division, who was general director of Sayano-Shushenskaya in 2002-2006.

The 18-name list also includes former Sayano-Shushenskaya director Nikolai Nevolko, some of his former deputies and heads of Sayano-Shushenskaya divisions, and Anatoly Konovalov, deputy head of Rostekhnadzor’s branch for the Siberian Federal District.

With nine of its 10 generating units destroyed or heavily damaged by the blast, Sayano-Shushenskaya, Russia’s largest hydroelectric power plant and, prior to the accident, the supplier of 15% to 20% of electricity for Siberia, remains at a standstill.

It is estimated that putting it back in operation would take several years and cost about 40 billion rubles.

(c) 2009 Daily News Bulletin; Moscow – English. Provided by ProQuest LLC. All rights Reserved.

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