Loadshedding is a way to manage the national power grid in order to prevent a widespread blackout. Loadshedding involves reducing the amount of electricity being supplied across the country, and this reduction varies according to different stages. The higher the stage, the greater the amount of power that needs to be reduced.
There are different stages of loadshedding, ranging from stage 1 to stage 8. At each stage, a specific amount of electricity is shed from the national grid. For example, during stage 1, 1000 megawatts of power are shed, while during stage 8, 8000 megawatts of power are shed. The higher the stage, the more frequently loadshedding occurs, and the greater the number of customers who are affected.
Stage 1: 1000MW shed
Stage 2: 2000MW shed
Stage 3: 3000MW shed
Stage 4: 4000MW shed
Stage 5: 5000MW shed
Stage 6: 6000MW shed
Stage 7: 7000MW shed
Stage 8: 8000MW shed
During loadshedding, electricity is cut off in specific areas for a certain period of time, typically in blocks of 2 to 4 hours. The system operator determines the loadshedding stage based on the amount of power needed to balance the grid, and then Eskom and municipalities implement the loadshedding on a rotational basis.
It is important to understand loadshedding stages and how they work, as it can help individuals and businesses to plan and prepare for power outages, and to conserve electricity during times when it is in high demand.