Why there was stage 4 load-shedding

Eskom system operator Bernard Magoro has detailed why South Africa was subject to stage 4 load-shedding in March 2019.

Speaking at a media briefing this afternoon, Magoro said a combination of factors led to the extensive load-shedding between 14-23 March.

He said unplanned outages of up to 13,000MW hit Eskom and that they experienced 16 boiler tube leaks in 10 days at their power stations.

Typically, unplanned outages are normally under 10,000MW – while Eskom normally only experiences 10-13 boiler tube leaks per month.

Diesel and cyclone Idai

Other contributing factors to the load-shedding included a loss of power imported from Cahora Bassa in Mozambique, following cyclone Idai hitting the country.

This took 1,200MW destined for South Africa offline.

As a result of these outages, Eskom was forced to run diesel turbines around the clock to produce electricity. This resulted in Eskom running out of diesel – and the turbines going offline.

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Why there was stage 4 load-shedding