Eskom stage 4 load-shedding — and blackouts all weekend

Eskom says that stage 4 load-shedding will be implemented from 14:00 on Friday until 05:00 on Saturday. After that, stage 2 load-shedding will continue until 05:00 on Monday, 8 November.

This follows the shutdown of three generating units at Kendal Power Station, a unit trip each at Tutuka and Matimba power stations, and the delayed return to service of a unit each at Majuba and Lethabo power stations.

“Stage 4 load-shedding is necessary to stop the use of open-cycle gas turbine (OCGT) generators in order to preserve the remaining fuel at these power stations, which is critically low,” Eskom stated.

“There is insufficient diesel available in the country to continue generating with the OCGTs at the current rate.”

Eskom said it is anticipated that some generating units will return to service later today and overnight, allowing a reduction to stage 2 load-shedding for the remainder of the weekend.

“Stage 2 load-shedding is necessary to replenish emergency generation reserves, particularly at the pump storage schemes for the week ahead,” it said.

Total breakdowns currently amount to 17,437MW, while planned maintenance is 4,361MW of capacity.

“We remind customers that load-shedding is implemented as a last resort to maintain the stability of the power system regardless of the stage of load-shedding.”

Kendal Power Station

Earlier o nFriday, Eskom said that Kendal’s conveyor belts that supply its generating units with coal were not running due to a power fault.

“No coal is reaching the station at this point,” Eskom said.

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.

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 100MWh more electricity than in 2020, which was the previous worst year and De Ruyter’s first at the helm of Eskom.

Now read: Eskom on brink of total collapse

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Eskom stage 4 load-shedding — and blackouts all weekend