Johannesburg residents were unexpectedly plunged into darkness on Friday evening, 5 February, despite the fact that they had expected load shedding this weekend.
Social media was abuzz with furious City Power customers – yours truly included – who had their electricity load shed hours ahead of the planned downtime. The following notice was shared at 19:20.
Dear Customer. Please find attached the new aligned 2-Hour City Power and Eskom Gauteng load shedding schedule. From 18:00 we will align to Eskom.
The City Power load shedding saga of 2021
In the West Rand, Johannesburg residents had load shedding scheduled from 00:00 to 04:30 Saturday morning, 5 February. However, much to their surprise, load shedding commenced from 18:00 on Friday.
Johannesburg residents are serviced by City Power rather than Eskom. As such receive their load shedding schedules from City Power and not Eskom. The sudden outage saw City Power users flock to social media to report the outage.
To add to the confusion, the City Power social media account initially seemed to have no idea about the change to the load shedding schedule and advised users to log a fault.
“City Power has just started implementing a new two-hour load shedding schedule which comes into effect immediately. We are aware that the implementation of this schedule at such short notice does not allow customers to plan their lives and the lives of their businesses”.
City Power tweets wrong information
After more than an hour of social media users desperately trying to get an answer, City Power eventually announced that, lo and behold, load shedding was in fact in progress across the various regions affected.
As per the statement, City Power had switched to a 2-hour rather than a 4-hour load shedding schedule. However, they didn’t bother to inform anyone including their own social media.
City Power’s Twitter account still tweeted out a notice of the normal 4-hour load shedding schedule on Friday morning. And to say that the new 2-hour load shedding schedule is confusing would be an understatement.
“The talks with Eskom and the plan towards aligning our load shedding schedules and to communicate the new schedule with you before its implementation have been overtaken by power generation and supply challenges on the Eskom side which have now compelled us to implement a two-hour load shedding schedule before embarking on proper engagement and communications with you as the customer”.
The City Power new load shedding schedule
Note you’ll need to check out the new schedule if you’re a City Power customer, but you’ll also have to confirm your new region as the new schedule uses new codes for the different neighbourhoods.
Good luck with that and the tiny font! While I can’t help to decipher the schedule without a digital telescope, I can assist with the new neighbourhood codes.