South Africans face another day of Stage 3 load-shedding cuts

By AT editor - 12 February 2019 at 6:54 am
South Africans face another day of Stage 3 load-shedding cuts

South Africans are looking at another round of load-shedding on Tuesday, as struggling utility provider Eskom will implement Stage 3 restrictions from 8 a.m. until 11 p.m. – a level that allows for 3000 MW of the national power load to be reduced, cutting it off to customers in two- or four-hour blocks.

“The power system remains constrained,” said Eskom spokesman Khulu Phasiwe in an early-morning update. “We’ll continue to provide regular updates about the state of the power system through various media platforms.”

The emergency loadshedding follows Monday’s Stage 4 emergency, which led to widespread power cuts and outcry from the public to the president. South African leader Cyril Ramaphosa said he was shocked by the deep emergency cuts on Monday and vowed to ensure the state-owned utility will be “fixed.”

Unexpected power cuts began on Sunday as the company said its fuel supplies were dwindling and generator capacity was reduced.  Monday saw an escalation from scheduled load shedding levels because seven generators tripped off in a five-hour period.

Phasiwe said some power facilities were expected back on line by morning, with at least four already returned to service. Eskom has ordered an immediate and urgent review to establish realistic project timelines and evaluate faults, as well as address “the ever-escalating costs and what can be done to increase output.”

Eskom asks that South African residents and businesses continue to use electricity sparingly to help reduce demand during the power crisis.

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