South Africa's Eskom to reduce power cuts but long-term outlook bleak

Eskom, responsible for providing electricity throughout South Africa, noted that the extreme weather conditions in the Western Cape led to the power outage, pushing some customers in the region into darkness.

The storms damaged infrastructure and considering further severe weather warnings, leading to temporary closure of schools in the Cape Winelands and Overberg districts.

"Parts of the network experienced minor structural damages leading to loss of supply to a number of areas. Those mainly affected are Beaufort West, Kraaifontein, Khayelitsha, Klawer and surrounding farms, Kylemore, Gordon's Bay, Sir Lowry's Pass, Somerset West, Stellenbosch farms and Vredendal," Eskom said, SA News reported.

It added, "The electricity network remains vulnerable as parts of the province continue to experience gale-force winds, heavy rain and thunderstorms. This has created challenges to electricity restoration efforts creating a backlog."

However, Eskom assured customers that their technicians are working in challenging weather conditions to fix faults and restore electricity safely and swiftly. The power utility advised customers to remain patient during this process.

Customers were informed that they might experience prolonged periods without electricity supply. Eskom recommended downloading the MyEskom Customer App from the iStore or Google Play Store or using the Alfred Chatbot on the Eskom website to report faults.

"The MyEskom Customer App and the Alfred Chatbot allow users to log a fault instantaneously and immediately provide a reference number needed to track progress on the fault. Alternatively, customers can contact the Share Call number at 08600 37566. Eskom wishes to apologize for any inconvenience caused," Eskom said.

The power utility has been actively sharing the status of various areas on X (formerly known as Twitter).

"Technicians are working on restoring supply after an outage affecting customers in Jabulani, Mofolo North, Sgodiphola & Zondi. The estimated time of restoration is currently not available," Eskom wrote Tuesday morning.

In a separate post, Eskom mentioned that they are also "attending to a supply interruption affecting customers in Klipspruit, Pimville Zones 5 and 6." However, the power utility noted that the estimated time of restoration is not available at this stage.

Similar updates were given for Ivory Park Exts 12 & 13, Jabavu, Molapo, Moroka North, Pimville Zones 1, 2 & 3, Rockville and White City.

The recent power outage comes a week after Eskom announced it will be implementing its new tariff hikes, ranging between 12.72% and 12.74%, which was approved by the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (NERSA) in December of last year.