Eskom announces more load shedding changes for the weekend
Update 2: Eskom has updated the schedule once again, confirming that load shedding will be suspended from 05h00 on Sunday until 16h00, with a further load shedding update to follow on the day. Load shedding was previously expected to be implemented at stage 1 on Sunday at 16h00.
Power utility Eskom has announced that stage 1 load shedding will replace all previously announced stage 2 load shedding slots.
The new schedule is as follows:
Saturday, 18 March
Sunday, 19 March
- Stage 1: 00h00 to 05h00
- Suspended: 05h00 to 16h00
At the start of the week, load shedding alternated between stage 3 during the day and stage 4 in the evenings.
The embattled company reported on Thursday (16 March) that six of its coal-fired power stations achieved an energy availability factor of 70% this week – a milestone last achieved in May 2022.
“Three of these power stations, Camden, Duvha and Matla, have been on a sustained upward trend as a result of a reduction of plant breakdowns and the return to service of a number of units that were on unplanned breakdowns,” the group said.
Eskom said that Lethabo, Matimba and Medupi have also been showcasing positive performance.
Board chairperson Mpho Makwana said the improved performance is rooted in the company’s ‘all-hands-on-deck-approach’, adding that it will continue to improve the national energy availability.
Despite lower stages of load shedding for the weekend ahead, Eskom’s fleet remains under pressure and its systems are constrained and unpredictable. As has been the case many times in the past, the situation can change at short notice.
South Africa has experienced near-permanent load shedding since September 2022. Since October 2022, the country has had 139 consecutive days of blackouts – including every single day of 2023 so far.
For people living in the major metros, load shedding schedules are available here:
For access to other load shedding schedules, Eskom has made them available on loadshedding.eskom.co.za.
Smartphone users can also download the app EskomSePush to receive push notifications when load shedding is implemented, as well as the times the area you are in will be off.
Read: Expect load shedding to get worse, electricity minister warns