Immediate Implementation of Stage 4 Load Shedding
Amid an ongoing struggle with the generation unit malfunctions, Eskom, the state power utility, has initiated Stage 4 load shedding with immediate effect. The situation looks set to worsen as Stage 6 load shedding is anticipated to be back in play from 2 pm this afternoon.
By Tuesday, the power utility saw an alarming 16,313MW off the grid due to unit breakdowns, with further losses occurring overnight.
A Shift to Stage 6: The Struggle Continues
Eskom stated: “Due to the loss of additional generating units overnight, the extensive use of Open Gas Cycle Turbines and the inability to replenish pumped storage dam levels, Stage 4 load shedding will be implemented at 7am [on Wednesday] until 2pm.” The energy provider warns of a shift to Stage 6 load shedding from 2 pm today until 5 am Thursday. This pattern, unfortunately, will be continued daily until further changes are noted.
Increasing Strain on the Power System
Eskom’s power system continues to bear the brunt of growing demand and delays in returning units to service. The utility provider noted that a generating unit at Matla and two at Kriel power stations were taken offline due to breakdowns. The tardiness in restoring a unit at Kendal and two at Tutuka power stations adds to the current capacity constraints.
Public Appeal to Assist in Reducing Demand
The Eskom teams are working diligently to restore these generating units. Meanwhile, Eskom is appealing to the public for assistance in curbing demand. The power utility thanked those who heed the call to use electricity sparingly, such as turning off geysers and pool pumps from 5 pm to 9 pm. Such efforts help alleviate pressure on the power system and contribute to reducing stages of load shedding.