January 31, 2020 / 5:40 AM / a month ago

Alcoa's Australian aluminium smelter hit by power cut amid heatwave

MELBOURNE, Jan 31 (Reuters) - Alcoa Corp’s Australian aluminium smelter was hit by a power cut on Friday after a transmission line tripped amid soaring temperatures in the country’s southeast, the Australian Energy Market Operator said.

AEMO, which manages electricity supply, said the transmission line outage “has resulted in a separation between Victoria and South Australia at the Heywood Interconnector, as well as interrupting supply at the Portland aluminium smelter.”

“At approximately 2:20 p.m. EST on 31 January, Portland Aluminium smelter lost power to both potlines due to a fault external to the plant. The cause of the fault is currently unknown,” an Alcoa spokeswoman said in emailed comments. (Reporting by Sonali Paul; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman)

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