Tesla's German gigafactory could get power again today

FRANKFURT: Tesla's German gigafactory near Berlin could be supplied with electricity again from today, the power firm in charge of fixing the outage, which began on March 5, said.

E.dis, a division of German energy network firm E.ON, said speedy weekend assembly work meant there was a chance power could restart in the evening of March 11.

The outage at the site in Gruenheide was a result of an arson attack on a nearby power pylon for which activists from the far-left Vulkangruppe claimed responsibility.

Tesla said last week it expected the outage to last until March 15, while the works council chief of the electric vehicle (EV) maker's Brandenburg plant said on March 8 it would restart this week, without giving a specific date.

E.dis said that resumption of power supply depended on a high-voltage test as well as the official approval by engineers, both of which are expected to take place today.

Tesla said that while the factory, which employs around 12,500 staff, was still without power, the update by E.dis suggested that the connection to the grid could be re-established today.

"As soon as this has happened, we will gradually start up the systems. It is not yet possible to say how long it will take until production can be fully resumed," the company said in emailed comments.

Joerg Steinbach, the economy minister in Brandenburg, said that E.dis employees had been working in a three-shift mode to ensure electricity can flow as soon as possible.

"It now looks like it won't take until the end of the week, but that the power supply can be restored sooner," he told public broadcaster RBB.

The outage has meant Tesla cannot produce around 1,000 cars a day, with the factory's head saying that the disruption would cause hundreds of millions of euros in damages.
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