Cape Town – Power utility Eskom on Friday announced it will implement State 4 load shedding blackouts until further notice, due to breakdowns and a lack of diesel.
The implementation of load shedding will be maintained at Stage 4 until further notice.
Eskom had earlier announced it would implement Stage 3 load shedding until further notice, but this has now been ramped up to Stage 4, which will see prolonged hours of darkness.
Eskom spokesperson Sikonathi Mantshantsha said the higher stage of load shedding is mainly due to the high level of breakdowns and the depleted emergency generation reserves.
"Changes in the stages of load shedding will be more erratic due to the absence of the buffer that is normally provided by the diesel generation capacity between generating unit breakdowns and since on Friday morning a generating unit each at Kendal and Kriel power stations were taken off-line for repairs," Mantshantsha said.
He also added that delays in returning to service a unit each at Arnot, Grootvlei, Hendrina and Tutuka power stations have contributed to the capacity constraints. A generating unit each at Camden, Kriel, Tutuka and two units at Majuba power stations were returned to service.
"We currently have 4 887MW on planned maintenance, while another 15 320MW of capacity is unavailable due to breakdowns.
“Load shedding is implemented only as a last resort in view of the shortage of generation capacity and the need to attend to breakdowns," Mantshantsha said.
He further added that Eskom will publish a further update as soon as there are any significant changes.