Japan's JERA shuts down Chiba thermal power station

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Japan's JERA shuts down Chiba thermal power station

Japan's biggest power generator JERA shut down its 500 megawatt MW unit at Chiba thermal power station near Tokyo on Saturday, raising fears of an electricity crunch as a prolonged heatwave keeps demand at high levels.

The fire broke out around noon on Saturday near the steam valve of one of the three turbines at the No. The JERA said on Saturday that it had 3 unit of the gas-fired combined-cycle power station. It added that the fire was extinguished about an hour later.

JERA, a joint venture between Tokyo Electric Power and Chubu Electric Power, was checking all equipment at the unit that had the fire, and would announce the timing of the restart when it is set, JERA said in a statement.

In Japan's industry ministry said energy supplies are expected to remain tight during the peak summer season, prompting households and businesses to conserve electricity.

The country suffered its worst June heat since record-keeping began 147 years ago, and authorities issued a daily warning for possible power shortages from Monday through Thursday.

Any more unexpected disruptions in power generation may prompt similar warnings.

On Sunday, central Tokyo hit its ninth day of temperatures above 35 degrees Celsius, marking the longest streak since record-keeping began in 1875, according to Kyodo news agency.