Greetings Neighbours, Eskom’s power cuts have all taken us by surprise. Below the City of Cape Town explains how we can keep safe during this time of load shedding and how to reduce its impact. The CoCT also goes on to explain why it cannot mitigate the impact of load shedding as it has been able to do so in the past.
Please see the Media Release (CoCT) in part shown below:
With the resumption of Eskom’s load-shedding across South Africa, the City encourages its residents to plan ahead and to follow a few simple tips to ensure that they stay connected, healthy and safe.
· Communication: Ensure that your cell phone, laptop, tablet and radio are always fully charged when power is available. This will allow you to be able to communicate with friends and family during load-shedding
· Transport: Make sure that your vehicle always has fuel in the tank as most petrol stations are unable to pump fuel during power outages
· Cash: Keep some cash on you as ATMs cannot operate without electricity
· Security and safety: Backup batteries for electrically operated gates, garage doors and security systems should be kept in a good working condition and be able to last through periods of load-shedding. Store temporary lighting such as battery-powered torches, gas lamps and candles in places where they will be easy to find in the dark
· Eating: If you do not have a gas stove, prepare meals before the power is scheduled to be switched off. Boil water in your kettle and keep it in thermos flasks for hot drinks. You can also use an insulating cover on teapots, pots and pans to keep drinks and meals warm
· Medication: Most medication requiring refrigeration can be kept in a closed fridge for several hours without spoiling, but you should check with your doctor or pharmacist if in doubt
· Traffic lights: intersections with traffic lights that are not working because of load-shedding should be treated as four-way-stops. The motorists who stops first may proceed first if the way is clear and safe to do so. Please stay calm and follow defensive driving techniques
Please note that Eskom is the lead authority in this matter.
In the past, the City has been able to mitigate the impact of load-shedding in its electricity supply areas. If for instance Eskom announced Stage 2, the City, due to spare generation capacity from the Steenbras Hydro-electric Power Scheme, could assist and keep its customers on a lower stage of load-shedding. This is not possible at the moment as the Steenbras scheme is undergoing necessary maintenance until April 2019.
The maintenance was also planned as electricity usage is the lowest at this time of the year, which would ideally have had a minimal impact on City customers. However, with the latest round of Eskom load-shedding, the City is unable to assist its customers.
Due to Cape Town’s great electricity-saving efforts brought on by many years of City conservation campaigns, usage is already relatively low, so reducing usage currently will unfortunately not help to mitigate the impact of Eskom load-shedding especially as the Steenbras scheme is undergoing maintenance.
Please continue to follow the City of Cape Town on Facebook and Twitter for Eskom load-shedding alerts. City-supplied customers will be directed to the City’s website onwww.capetown.gov.za for updates and for accessing the load-shedding schedule. Eskom customers should visit www.loadshedding.eskom.co.za
As always, residents and businesses are encouraged to visit the City’s electricity saving page www.savingelectricity.org.za for a wealth of useful information to help reduce dependence on electricity and to save money.
Please refer queries about load-shedding to Eskom.
Image Credit: Natalia Y
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