Russian missile, drone strike destroys Kyiv's largest power plant, damages two others


April 11 (UPI) -- Russia unleashed mass aerial strikes against energy targets across Ukraine overnight knocking out one of the main power stations supplying Kyiv and damaging power infrastructure from Lviv and Odessa in the far west and south to Kharkiv and Zaporizhzhia in the east.

The Trypillia Thermal Power Plant in Ukrainka, 28 miles south of the capital, came under attack during a five hour drone raid on Kyiv province with Ukraine state energy company Centrenergo chairman Andrii Gota subsequently confirming the facility had been destroyed with total loss of electricity generating capacity.

Calling it the "blackest day" in Centrenergo's history, Gota said no workers had been killed but that the plant had been severely damaged and company and city firefighters were still battling a large-scale blaze in the turbine hall ignited by drone ordnance.

"The scale of destruction is terrifying," Gota wrote in a social media post.

"Money can't value this. This is for us the biggest challenge in the company's history."

The plant is the main provider of electricity to Zhytomyr and Cherkasy provinces, in addition to Kyiv.

Ukrainka Mayor Oleksandr Turenko urged residents to stock up on water and charge all their electrical devices in an 8 a.m. local time post on social media that he was forced to abandon due to air raid warning sirens sounding.

Trypillia is the second power station the state-run provider has lost in three weeks after massive Russian missile and drone strikes on March 22 took out the company's Zmiiv Thermal Power Plant just south of Kharkiv, Ukraine second city.

DTEK, the country's largest private energy company also said on social media that two of its electricity generating plants were damaged in the latest overnight attacks, but did not state their names or locations.

Russia launched 82 missiles and drones in all overnight Wednesday, of which 57 were shot down by air defense systems, including 10 missiles targeting Kharkiv with Mayor Ihor Terekhov warning residents on social media to prepare for "possible electricity supply problems" and of the closure of the city's subway "for the next several hours."

"Plan your travel routes, accordingly," he advised.

However, Lviv bore the brunt of the missile attacks, Ukraine Air Force commander Air Mykola Oleschuk said in a social media post.

"Russian missiles and drones attacked a gas distribution infrastructure facility in the Stryi district and an electric substation in the Chervonohradsky district. Multiple fires started," said Lviv Governor Maksym Kozytskyy.

Condemning what he said was a "heinous missile attack," Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky renewed his calls for Europe and "other partners" to do less talking and get on with transfers of air defense weapons systems and other military assistance that they could see Ukraine was in "critical" need of.

"We need air defense systems and other defense assistance, not just turning a blind eye and having lengthy discussions," Zelensky said in a post on X.