Essential service permit for Energas during lockdown

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Energas Technologies has been granted an essential service permit to support Sasol gas stations. Meanwhile, the company is working remotely to ensure continuous progress of projects during the lockdown period in South Africa.

Following the announcement of a nationwide lockdown in South Africa, Energas has been granted an essential service permit that enables it to support Sasol gas stations. Laetitia Jansen van Vuuren, Product Engineer at Energas Technologies, says HPCMS (high pressure customer metering stations) and CMS (customer metering stations) supply gas as an energy source to power plants, industries and homes. Therefore, Energas maintenance teams are on call to support these critical stations in case of trips or failures.

To further limit the impact of the lockdown on the business, Energas has also put several measures in place to ensure continuation of projects. Jansen van Vuuren says all the staff – including project engineering and quality assurance – are currently working remotely, thus projects are ongoing.

“Our projects are continuing as usual. The first step is quotations and basic engineering. Once we have successfully secured a project, the second step is detailed engineering, which can be done remotely. All meetings are done virtually, via Zoom, Teams and Skype, among other platforms. The third step is ordering of equipment from our suppliers. It takes several months to be fabricated (overseas mostly) so this can still continue during the lockdown,” explains Jansen van Vuuren.

With regards to suppliers, Jansen van Vuuren says most of Energas Technologies’ overseas equipment suppliers are still working with certain safety measures in place, like split shifts for the factory and supporting staff/engineering working from home. “The local hard lockdown has most of our local suppliers working from home, with non-essential services/products still on hold. We are hoping that after end of April, a soft lockdown can be implemented where factories and businesses can continue with special safety measures in place,” she says.

Commenting on the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, Jansen van Vuuren says this will have a massive effect of the South African economy at large. “It is impossible to predict how long it is going to continue and Energas management will have to make difficult decisions as it progresses. Our aim is to continue with business and projects as far as possible and to ‘survive’ this challenging time,” concludes Jansen van Vuuren.

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