Ricochet News

Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality clarifies load shedding implementation

By Jesica Slabbert - Dec 10, 2018
Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality clarifies load shedding implementation

The Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality hosted a press conference on Monday in an attempt to inform and provide clarity on the implementation of load shedding and how the process of load shedding is carried out across the Bay.

The press conference was meant to take place last week, but was postponed due to conflicting schedules and unforeseen circumstances.

The media were invited to see how load shedding is monitored and informed on how stage 1 or stage 2 load shedding is decided upon.

In attendance was Andile Lungisa, the Metro’s MMC for Infrastructure, Engineering, Electricity & Energy, who was accompanied by Bernhardt Lamour, the acting Executive Director for Electricity and Energy, and Lonwabo Ndlaleni, the Superintendent Manager of systems control at the Munelek Training Centre.

“We work according to what Eskom requires of us. Load shedding is a competency of Eskom, and all we do is facilitate that process. If we don’t participate in load shedding the entire country could suffer,” said Lamour.

He explained that participating in load shedding is part of the municipality's licensing agreement with Eskom, and failing to adhere to the request would make them in breach of contract and cause lots of problems.

“We cannot only depend on Eskom, we must be able to generate our own electricity and whatever we do get from Eskom will become a surplus,” said Lungisa.

Lungisa stated that the municipality is looking into utilising solar power and waste transformation resources as well.

Criteria used for load shedding

“The municipality can decide which customers to switch at what stage, we do our own load shedding schedules, Eskom does not get involved with this,” said Lamour.

“We determine the groups that will be affected per stage. A technical analysis is done and we revise it every six months."

He said that they analyse many things when deciding which areas to place in what groups and whether they will be too negatively impacted by the load shedding.

The criteria to consider is safety, the environment, social impact, technical constrains, and exclusion areas such as hospitals.

All load shedding groups are distributed evenly over an eight-day cycle for each stage of load shedding. The load shedding schedule is only valid for a six-month period after which it is revised and changes are made when required.

Lamour advised the public to switch of and unplug all electrical devices when affected by load shedding as to ensure that your power comes back on faster and safer when load shedding ends. As many people switch their appliances on at the same time when load shedding ends, it puts a strain on that particular station.

He also stated that the public needs to be aware of their area's load shedding schedule, as some people will think they are experiencing load shedding not on the schedule, when in fact there is a fault with the power line.

Lamour advised that any area experiencing ‘load shedding’ when they are not scheduled to must report it to the municipality as it is a fault that can be repaired.

To find your load shedding schedule go here.

Should you have an electricity related complaint, contact the municipality at 041 506 5595.