Free To Download Load Shedding Schedule
Eskom’s load shedding portal provides up-to-date details on the current stage of load shedding, the propensity for further rotational cuts, and an area search for direct consumers. It’s an easy-to-use search function, which, although not always 100% accurate, at least provides a rough estimate of what to expect and when. To check your daily load shedding schedule, go onto Eskom Load Shedding Schedule and type your suburb/village/area in the quick-search field.
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What is load shedding?
As South Africa’s primary electricity supplier, Eskom’s mandate is to ensure security of supply to service the South African economy and society.
Eskom therefore generates, transports and distributes electricity – and this is managed predominantly by Eskom for the entire country; however, Eskom only directly supplies more than 5 million households which means that most of us are supplied by municipalities.
At all times there must be sufficient supply to meet demand, but electricity demand is not consistent because of:
- peak periods when demand is higher
- and continuous growth in the number of customers requiring electricity services.
This means that the power system requires constant and prudent management of supply to meet demand but, today, Eskom faces the challenge of a constrained power system that will affect us until substantial new power capacity is available. In the meantime, to meet demand, our older power stations and infrastructure are being used to full capacity. In addition, routine and necessary maintenance of plant and infrastructure is carefully scheduled to limit compromising supply capacity during periods of high demand. We have also strengthened the distribution network to reduce the incidence of localised outages when the power trips because of overload in local areas such as suburbs.
Localised outages should not be confused with load shedding. Local outages can occur when there is either a technical fault in the transmission or distribution network, or when electricity equipment has been tampered with such as theft of cables, or when there is an overload of the local system because of irregular high usage due to electricity theft as well as normal faults.
Load shedding, or load reduction, is done countrywide as a controlled option to respond to unplanned events to protect the electricity power system from a total blackout. While we generally use the word blackout loosely to mean “no lights” in our local area, a country-wide blackout has much more serious consequences, which can occur when there is too much demand and too little supply, bringing the power system into an imbalance – tripping the power system in its entirety.
Many countries and cities in other parts of the world have experienced complete blackouts. To re-start their system, they are able to tap into a power system from a neighbour which can take a few hours or days, but we have to rely on ourselves to start the system from scratch – energising one power plant at a time and one section of the country at a time. It could take up to two weeks to restore full power, which would have a severe impact on our country! This is why we use load shedding, or load reduction, to effectively manage our power system and assist in protecting it from such an event.
Eskom’s Load Shedding Protocols
Keeping the power system balanced at 50Hz, as per international standards, is critical to prevent a nation-wide blackout and when the national electricity grid is under pressure with normal measures implemented, Eskom must reduce demand, as agreed with the National Energy Regulator (NERSA), and implements a process of Load Reduction which has two components:
- Load Curtailment. Our agreement with some of our large industrial customers means we can instruct them to reduce electricity consumption when it is urgent to balance the system. They are able to reduce their load by up to 20%, significantly easing capacity on the grid; but it takes a minimum of 2 hours to implement.
- Load Shedding. If, after Load Curtailment, the demand on the system is still greater than available supply, we have to implement a process of load shedding to prevent an imbalance and subsequent blackout. Load shedding will also be implemented if there is insufficient time to request load curtailment; and in winter load shedding can be implemented before curtailment due to the peaky nature of the problem.
Or Use: EskomSePush
To Find Your Schedule On this Site
To find the schedule for your area on this web site (if you are an Eskom customer):
- Type in your Suburb/town in the quick-search box or,
- Choose your Province/Metropolitan Area/Suburb/town via the drop-down boxes.
- If you cannot find your Suburb/Town, try to search for areas adjacent to your neighbourhood.
Many electricity networks do not coincide exactly with area boundaries. To overcome this, we have divided them into subsections A & B, East & West or North & South.
If you are an Eskom customer and cannot find your schedule:
- Please either log in to CS Online on the Eskom website www.eskom.co.za or,
- Call the Eskom Contact Centre on 0860037566 / 08600ESKOM to verify your schedule. You can use your Eskom Account or Meter Number to find your schedule.
- Download the MyEskom App which now provides the ability to search for an Eskom schedule using Eskom Account Number, Eskom Meter Number, Address or Geolocation, plus a number of other value added functions.
If you are not an Eskom customer, please contact your Municipality or Metro.
- The Municipality/Metro schedules are different to the Eskom schedules in design and detail.
- Eskom has established principles for the design of its schedules in order to ensure as much equity and consistency as possible.
- In many cases, Metros/Municipalities have agreed to work according to the same principles, but ultimately Eskom has no control over how the Municipalities/Metros determine their own schedules.
Understanding Eskom Load Shedding Stages
Load shedding will be used under emergency conditions for limited periods.
Four schedules have been developed based on the possibility of risk and to ensure that load shedding is applied in a fair and equitable manner:
- Stage 1 allows for up to 1000 MW of the national load to be shed.
- Stage 2 allows for up to 2000 MW of the national load to be shed.
- Stage 3 allows for up to 3000 MW of the national load to be shed.
- Stage 4 allows for up to 4000 MW of the national load to be shed.
Load shedding will be implemented in most instances in 2 hour blocks.
- However, in Eskom-supplied Johannesburg areas, blocks are 4 hours long. This is to coincide with City Power’s 4 hour schedule.
Each of the time periods has an additional 30 minutes added to allow for switching of networks in a way that will not damage the power system.
- Most customers (those in 2 hour blocks) may therefore be without electricity for up to 2.5 hours at a time, while customers in 4 hour blocks may be without electricity for up to 4.5 hours at a time.
Eskom will begin load shedding customers at the start of the period (for example from 06:00), and will have all scheduled customers switched off within the first half hour (that is, by 06:30)
At the end of the period, after the two / four hours (that is, by 08:00 or 10:00 as applicable), Eskom will start returning power to customers and should have them all back within half an hour (that is, by 08:30 or 10:30).
The frequency of load shedding increases as higher Stages are used
- Stage 1 requires the least amount of load shedding, 3 times over a four day period for two hours at a time, or 3 times over an eight day period for four hours at a time.
- Stage 2 will double the frequency of Stage 1, which means you will be scheduled for load shedding 6 times over a four day period for two hours at a time, or 6 times over an eight day period for four hours at a time Stage 3 will increase the frequency of Stage 2 by 50%, which means you will be scheduled for load shedding 9 times over a four day period for two hours at a time, or 9 times over an eight day period for four hours at a time.
- Stage 4 will double the frequency of Stage 2, which means you will be scheduled for load shedding 12 times over a four day period for two hours at a time, or 12 times over an eight day period for four hours at a time.
If more load needs to be shed than has been scheduled in Stages 1, 2, 3 and 4 then National Control will instruct additional, unscheduled load shedding. This means you may be shed outside of your scheduled times.
The actual stage in use at the time will be displayed on the main Eskom website and on the home page of the Load Shedding Website, as well as on the MyEskom App.