Despite its best efforts, Eskom was unable to suspend loadshedding on Thursday morning as it had previously stated.

When we say “best efforts” we really mean that. On Wednesday morning Eskom said it had brought unplanned outages down to 9 817MW. Late yesterday however, Eskom announced that unplanned outages had increased sharply.

“Unplanned outages or breakdowns were at 11 567MW as at 06:00 this morning. Critical maintenance is being done on units that are currently on planned outages as well as some of those on unplanned outages to ensure timeous return to service,” said Eskom.

What is clear however is that Eskom has to implement loadshedding until Friday. In addition, Eskom says there is a high probability of loadshedding taking place over the weekend.

“We don’t take the decision to implement loadshedding lightly, but the reality is that our generating infrastructure is constrained and unreliable,” explained Eskom Group Chief Executive, Andre de Ruyter.

“It is regrettable for us to have to implement loadshedding but it is unavoidable given the state of the generation infrastructure as well as unusually high demand. Loadshedding is necessary to protect the power system as we conduct critical maintenance and to replenish emergency reserves,” de Ruyter concluded.

Eskom also reminded South Africans that the suspension of loadshedding during rush hour traffic was contingent on there being capacity to suspend loadshedding.

At present the utility is replenishing emergency reserves at its pumped storage schemes and open cycle gas turbines.

The silver lining (albeit a somewhat tarnished silver) is that loadshedding remains at Stage 2.

Check your schedules and make sure you’re prepared for loadshedding when it hits your area.

Eskom has also appealed to South Africans to conserve power where possible when the lights are on.

Brendyn Lotz writes news, reviews, and opinion pieces for Hypertext. His interests include SMEs, innovation on the African continent, cybersecurity, blockchain, games, geek culture and YouTube.