Eskom said South Africans should expect ongoing load-shedding during the evening peak period throughout winter.
The power utility implemented stage 2 load-shedding on Sunday evening because of 10 unit breakdowns at 7 power stations.
The breakdowns included 3 generation units at Tutuka, one unit at Majuba, one unit at Kriel, and one unit at the Matla power station.
There were also trips at a unit each at Medupi, Kusile, and the Duvha power stations.
The latest load-shedding does not come as a surprise – Eskom has been struggling to cope with demand for a few weeks.
Eskom spokesperson Sikonathi Mantshantsha previously warned the grid has been under severe pressure and Eskom has not been able to meet peak evening demand.
On Monday 3 May, for example, demand exceeded supply by 254MW. On Tuesday Eskom was 158MW short and on Wednesday there was a deficit of 711MW.
The only reason load-shedding was not implemented is because of load curtailment where large companies are forced to reduce their power consumption.
Eskom suspended load-shedding earlier today after an improvement in supply capacity, Mantshantsha said.
“Seven generation units returned to service over the past 24 hours, helping to ease the supply constraints,” he said.
Eskom further expects improvement in the supply this week as more generation units will be returned to service.
Stage 2 load-shedding will, however, return between 17:00 and 22:00 tonight as Eskom will not be able to meet demand during the evening peak.
Mantshantsha added that South Africans should prepare themselves for ongoing load-shedding in the coming months.
“There is a likelihood of ongoing load-shedding during the evening peak period – 17:00 to 22:00 – throughout winter,” he said.
This is in line with Eskom’s previous comments that people should expect load-shedding to be a reality for the better part of the year.
Eskom expects some improvements from September 2021, but even then load-shedding will not be completely eliminated.
Sikonathi Mantshantsha announcement
Due to an improvement in supply capacity, @Eskom_SA has suspended loadshedding from 04:00 today, but will resume Stage 2 loadshedding between 5 pm and 10 pm tonight, with the likelihood of ongoing loadshedding during the evening peak period (5 pm to 10 pm) throughout the winter
— SikonathiMantshantsh (@SikonathiM) May 18, 2021