Eskom has announced that due to a shortage of generation capacity stage 2 load shedding will be implemented from 5pm until 10pm on Friday night and will continue through the weekend.
Eskom spokesperson Sikonathi Mantshantsha said load shedding will be repeated at the same time on Saturday and Sunday evenings.
“Eskom will continue to closely monitor the system, adjust and communicate any changes as may be necessary. We currently have 3,405MW on planned maintenance, while another 15,534MW of capacity is unavailable due to breakdowns.”
Eskom has appealed to all South Africans to help limit the impact of load shedding by reducing the usage of electricity and switching off all non-essential items.
“Eskom would like to remind the public that load shedding is implemented only as a last resort to protect the national grid. We therefore urge all South Africans to continue using electricity sparingly especially between 5am and 9am, and 4pm and 10pm.”
Last week, during a media briefing, Eskom Executive for Transmission, Segomoco Scheppers, highlighted that there is an elevated risk of load shedding in winter.
“One thing counting in favour of the country is the world class and effective management by the transmission system operator, whose main task is to maintain the balance between supply and demand.”
Last month Scheppers said load shedding in winter will depend on whether it is able to contain the unplanned breakdowns to below 12,500MW and that the country could experience between 37 and 101 days of load shedding.
With warnings of bitterley cold condtions by the South African Weather Service (SAWS) for Gauteng and Johannesburg, the electricity grid is likely to be under pressure as South Africans try to keep warm.
The weather service issued a level 2 warning of bitterly cold conditions with the possibility of disruptive rain from Friday going into the weekend.
It said temperatures are only expected to reach a high of 13 degrees in Johannesburg.