Eskom gives weekend load-shedding update

As previously scheduled, Eskom will implement Stage 3 load-shedding from 16:00 on Thursday, 16 November 2023. However, Stage 3 load-shedding will be in effect for the entirety of Friday, 17 November.

The power utility attributed the need for increased load-shedding on Friday to a shortage of generation capacity. Rotational power cuts will drop to Stage 2 at 05:00 on Saturday, 18 November 2023.

“The shortage of generation capacity requires the implementation of Stage 3 load-shedding from 16:00 today until 05:00 on Saturday,” said Eskom.

“Thereafter, the implementation of Stage 2 load-shedding [will be in effect] from 05:00 until 05:00 on Sunday, followed by Stage 1 load-shedding until 16:00 on Sunday.”

Eskom currently has 4,654MW offline for planned maintenance, with a further 17,391MW unavailable due to breakdowns.

It said approximately 4,700MW of generating capacity is anticipated to return to the grid by Sunday evening.

The figure of 17,391MW due to breakdowns is significant. The last time Eskom breakdowns exceeded 17,000MW, electricity minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa said the power utility had dropped the ball.

“We have done exceptionally well over a period of three months [but] I think the ball has been dropped here,” said Ramokgopa.

“As a result of these failures, and this is something that is receiving attention, we’ve gone back to about 17,000MW [of breakdowns], and this is totally unacceptable, I must say.”

The load-shedding timetable from Thursday, 16 November 2023, until Sunday, 19 November, is summarised in the table below.

Load-shedding from 16 November 2023
Date Day Daytime (05:00–16:00) Evening peak (16:00–05:00)
16 November Thursday Stage 2 Stage 3
17 November Friday Stage 3 Stage 3
18 November Saturday Stage 2 Stage 2
19 November Sunday Stage 1 Stage 2

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Eskom gives weekend load-shedding update