Eskom increased load-shedding from stage 5 to stage 6 early Sunday morning without prior notification to the public after two more generation units tripped overnight.
The power utility published a tweet at 04:42 on Sunday, 18 September 2022, confirming that stage 6 had been implemented at about 04:16 AM, 26 minutes earlier.
Eskom said that a unit each at the Kusile and Kriel coal-fired power stations tripped.
It was unclear how much generating capacity the utility lost from the units’ tripping.
Each of Kusile’s generating units can provide 800MW of power at full capacity, while the older Kriel Power Station’s units had a maximum output of 500MW each.
The upgrade to stage 6 came after Eskom warned it might have to implement higher stages of load-shedding “at short notice” on Saturday.
At that time, it had announced an increase to stage 5 from stage 4 following the tripping of five generating units at several power stations, leading to a loss of 2,400MW in generating capacity.
That amount of capacity is typically equivalent to two stages of load-shedding.
The utility did not say how long stage 6 would last but is planning to hold a media briefing at 10:00 on Sunday morning to “update the public on the way forward”.