Newcastillians are advised to prepare for elevated levels of load shedding, as Stage 6 is set to resume from 2 pm on Wednesday afternoon, 12 July 2023. This comes as state power utility Eskom continues to grapple with breakdowns in its generation units.
As of Tuesday afternoon, 11 July 2023, a staggering 16,313MW were offline due to these breakdowns, with additional losses incurred overnight.
Eskom stated, “Due to the loss of additional generating units overnight, the extensive use of Open Gas Cycle Turbines and the inability to replenish pumped storage dam levels, Stage 4 load shedding will be implemented at 7 am on Wednesday until 2 pm. Thereafter, Stage 6 load shedding will be implemented from 14:00 today until 05:00 on Thursday. This pattern will be repeated daily until further notice. Eskom will publish an update as soon as any significant changes occur.”
The power utility further revealed that delays in restoring units to service, coupled with increased demand, are exacerbating the strain on the power system.
“A generating unit at Matla and two generating units at Kriel power stations were taken out of service due to breakdowns. The delays in returning to service a generating unit at Kendal and two generating units at Tutuka power stations are contributing to the current capacity constraints. Eskom teams are working tirelessly to return these generating units to service,” Eskom explained.
As Eskom grapples with maintaining a stable electricity supply, the power utility is now appealing to the public for assistance in reducing demand. This includes switching off geysers and pool pumps from 5 pm to 9 pm. Eskom emphasised that this voluntary effort significantly lowers demand, helps alleviate pressure on the power system, and contributes to lower stages of load shedding.
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