Stage 6 load shedding is back – here’s the new schedule

Power utility Eskom says that load shedding will be pushed to stage 6 on Wednesday (12 April).

Due to a shortage of generation capacity, stage 6 load shedding will be implemented from 16h00 this afternoon until 05h00 on Thursday. Thereafter, Stage 5 load shedding will be implemented until 16h00 on Thursday.

This pattern will be repeated daily until further notice. Eskom said it will publish a further update as soon as any significant changes occur.

The City of Cape Town said that its residents would be spared from stage 6 load shedding where possible, with a reduction to stage 4 during the day, until 22h00.

Here is the new schedule:

Wednesday, 12 April

  • Stage 5: until 16h00
  • Stage 6: 16h00 to 00h00

Thursday, 13 April

  • Stage 6: 00h00 to 05h00
  • Stage 5: 05h00 to 16h00
  • Stage 6: 16h00 to 00h00

Friday, 14 April

  • Stage 6: 00h00 to 05h00
  • Stage 5: 05h00 to 16h00
  • Stage 6: 16h00 to 00h00

Breakdowns are currently at 16,772MW of generating capacity while the generating capacity out of service for planned maintenance has reduced to 5,807MW.

Over the past 24 hours two generation units were returned to service at Kriel Power Station.

In the same period, a generating unit at Duvha Power Station was taken offline for repairs. The delays in returning a unit to service at Camden, Kendal, Lethabo, Medupi and Tutuka power stations have contributed to the capacity constraints.

Similarly, the increase in demand after the long weekend and the re-opening of the schools has put additional strain on the power generation system.

Worse to come

South Africa has managed to avoid stage 6 load shedding since February but has maintained near-permanent load shedding for all but one day of the year – mostly at stage 4.

Energy experts and South Africa’s minister of electricity have warned that load shedding is expected to get worse in the coming winter months.

“I’ll be brutally honest. It’s going to be an exceptionally difficult winter. We know that in summer conditions, the deficit is 6,000 megawatts. When we go into winter, the peak can go up to 37,000 megawatts,” the minister said.

He added that his department, in collaboration with Eskom, is doing everything it can to avoid the worst-case scenario of stages beyond stage 6 load shedding.

Stage 6 is currently the highest official stage of national load shedding implemented thus far – however, when taking into account load curtailment, far more than 6,000MW has been taken offline. Eskom itself admitted that the group dipped into stage 7 for a period.

The power utility is currently piloting measures to help reduce demand on the grid, including expanding its load curtailment contracts to smaller power consumers like small businesses and residential areas.


For people living in the major metros, load shedding schedules are available here:

For access to other load shedding schedules, Eskom has made them available on

Smartphone users can also download the app EskomSePush to receive push notifications when load shedding is implemented, as well as the times the area you are in will be off.

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