POWER generation giant Drax has separated its key operational teams to ensure it continues to deliver the energy needed across the UK.

The UK’s largest power station and biggest source of renewable power into the national grid has also physically distanced key employees from each other, moved as many employees as possible to work from home and imposed strict controls on visitors to the site to reduce any risk of the spread of infection

Contingency plans are also in place to manage risks associated with colleague absences.

Group CEO Will Gardiner said coronavirus was having far-reaching effects on all industries.

“At Drax, we take our responsibilities as a member of critical national infrastructure and as an essential service provider very seriously. We are committed to maintaining a continuous, stable and reliable electricity supply for millions of homes and businesses in the UK.

“Our employees’ health and wellbeing are vital, and we’re working hard to ensure we are supporting them with both their physical and mental health, whether working at home or at one of our sites," he said.

“Across all our sites we are have implemented strategies to reduce the chances of people spreading the virus and have operational plans in place to ensure continued delivery of power into the grid.

“At Drax Power Station, we have arranged for the separation of key operational teams and employees so they are physically distanced from each other. We have moved as many employees as possible to work from home, so there are fewer people in our workplaces reducing the risk of the spread of infection, should it arise. We have strict controls on visitors to the site and on our contractors and suppliers. Our resilience teams are working well and we have contingency plans in place to manage risks associated with colleague absences.”

Drax visitor centres have closed, and it has stopped all but critically important travel between sites. It is also working to maintain a resilient supply chain for the sustainably-sourced biomass wood pellets required to produce electricity at Drax.

Last week Associated British Ports and Drax received the largest ever shipment of sustainable biomass to arrive in the Humber region. The vessel transported 63,907 tonnes of wood pellets from the US Port of Greater Baton Rouge in Louisiana - enough renewable fuel to generate electricity for 1.3 million homes.