Sudden Eskom load-shedding announced — whole power station goes offline

Eskom has announced it will implement stage 2 load-shedding at 11:00 on Friday morning. It gave no end date for the current bout of rotational power cuts.

The load-shedding is required due to a unit at Tutuka Power Station tripping, a delay in the return to service of a unit each at Lethabo and Majuba power stations, and a conveyor belt at the Kendal Power Station not working due to a power failure.

The utility said it took three units at Kendal offline, and the fourth remaining unit was also expected to be shut down.

“The conveyor belts supplying these units are currently not running due to a power fault. No coal is reaching the station at this point,” Eskom stated.

The Kendal Power Station is located near Ogies in Mpumalanga and has a total installed capacity of 4,116MW. It is the same power station that previously suffered a major conveyor belt fire.

Kendal power station

Eskom did not state for how long the load-shedding would last but warned it expected it to continue into the weekend.

“This can only be confirmed once we have a better understanding of these problems and when it is likely to be resolved,” it added.

The latest power outages will only add to a dismal load-shedding record for Eskom CEO André de Ruyter.

According to recent data from the CSIR, 2021 has seen the worst levels of load-shedding since the outages first started in 2008.

With three months to go, Eskom has already shed over 100GWh more electricity than in 2020, which was the previous worst year and De Ruyter’s first at the helm of Eskom.

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Sudden Eskom load-shedding announced — whole power station goes offline