The Unexpected Shock: Electrocution at Substation
Late on Friday, 19th May, the energy crisis in Roodepoort took an unforeseen turn when an unidentified individual got electrocuted at a substation. Reportedly, the person, now hospitalised, was messing with the substation’s equipment at the time of the incident.
Unusual End to Load Shedding Brings More Darkness
Typically, residents look forward to the end of scheduled load shedding. However, the situation in Roodepoort was not so typical. As per City Power, the person was electrocuted just before the load shedding was supposed to conclude at 2:30 PM, leading to prolonged darkness in many areas.
Regions Impacted by the Extended Power Outage
City Power confirmed the following areas as affected:
- Little Falls
- Strubens Valley
- Honeydew Ridge
- Harveston and surrounding areas
City Power also announced on Twitter that “Operators are securing the mini substation where the flash occurred and will gradually start to restore areas in phases.” Unfortunately, there was no Estimated Time of Restoration (ETR) for full recovery at that time.
Vandalism – A Persistent Challenge for Johannesburg City
The incident brings into sharp focus the ongoing challenge of infrastructure vandalism. The City of Johannesburg stated that it’s a serious issue they are battling, yet pointed out progress in achieving over 120 convictions related to City Power infrastructure offences.
In light of the increased stress on power services due to Eskom’s Stage 6 load shedding, City Power has decided to focus on paying customers only during power outages. “We are really at a stage where we are not going to respond to any calls, especially from people that have not paid,” explained Issac Mangena, City Power spokesperson, in a Newzroom Afrika interview.
City Power concluded with a plea to residents: “Kindly report cable theft and illegal connections anonymously on 0800 002 587 or on 011 490 7553 alternatively please log on citypower.mobi to avoid unplanned power interruptions and prolonged outages.”