Johannesburg – The City of Johannesburg and City Power will remotely switch off geyser control systems to certain areas at specific times to manage electricity control across the city.

“We also appeal to large power users and key business customers to reduce their usage of electricity by switching off all non-essential machinery, as well as other appliances such as air conditioners and lighting,” City Power said on Friday.

“It also requests domestic customers and medium and small enterprises to reduce their electricity consumption by switching off non-essential appliances, such as office and basement lights, where possible.”

Reduce demand

Eskom said on Thursday that the electricity system would be under severe strain over the weekend and it asked municipalities to reduce demand by load shedding their customers.

City Power and the City of Johannesburg said customers should visit their websites to confirm the rolling blackout schedule and have torches and lanterns at hand to light up their homes.

“Have candles and other alternative lighting systems available, ensure your security system has appropriate battery back-up and find food and refreshments before the blackouts start,” the statement said.

Eskom said on Thursday that it was planning countrywide power cuts to build up reserves over the weekend.

Rolling blackouts

“The electricity system will remain constrained today [Friday] and the risk of load-shedding remains hig.

“Eskom has also taken a decision to load shed over the weekend in order to build up reserves for the week ahead.”

The Nelson Mandela municipality said rolling blackouts started in the area at 11:00.

The municipality said it was highly probable there would be blackouts over the weekend.

Meanwhile the eThekwini municipality said Stage 3 load shedding was underway in most of Durban, with the exclusion of strategic resources.

And Cape Town said load shedding Stage 3A had started in the Mother City.