Friday, June 21, 2024

How load shedding in South Africa is affecting the nation

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Isaac Kaledzi
Isaac Kaledzi
Isaac Kaledzi is an experienced and award winning journalist from Ghana. He has worked for several media brands both in Ghana and on the International scene. Isaac Kaledzi is currently serving as an African Correspondent for DW.

What is load shedding?

Load shedding is essentially the shutting down of specific power grids in order to save electricity and distribute it to other areas.

There are multiple stages of load shedding ranging from level 1, which is almost unnoticeable, to level 10 which is basically a complete shutdown of electricity delivery to South African homes and businesses alike.

Unlike small businesses, casinos usually have backup “Jennies” (generators) to stay in power. This is why so many players worldwide can take advantage of great offers at Netbet on a 24/7 basis.

As you can imagine, the lack of electricity has detrimental effects on every sector. For instance how do farmers tend to their farms or how do banks run their security systems which are all heavily dependent on the use of electricity.

It comes as no surprise that in a world becoming increasingly modernised and power hungry, this is by all accounts a critical emergency.

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Eskom, the nations power utility group have been going through load shedding stages since 2015 with it become an increasingly regular occurrence for all South Africans.

Eskom states that with the growing economy an emphatic increase in population and a rise in investments have all had a hand in contributing to the crisis.

Problems Caused by Load Shedding

The cutting of electricity has many disastrous effects on the country. Without a backup generator, if a hospital or other medical facility loses power the consequences can be dire, as you can imagine many lives can and will be lost to preventable causes and are a primary reason as to why load shedding needs to be addressed with immediate effect.

City infrastructure such as traffic lights are often overlooked however, it is noticeable how important they are to city traffic.

When the lights are out there is unavoidable mayhem on the roads causing traffic jams lasting for hours which has a ripple effect on the economy by employees not being able to get to work.

Often the blackouts can last for several hours, meaning any perishable food items stored in refrigerators have ample opportunity to be spoiled, in turn costing families who are already struggling more than they can afford.

This has the knock-on effect as undernourished children are often at risk of deadly diseases which in turn forces mothers to stay home from work to care for their sick ones which in turn denies them the ability to go to work to earn money to provide health-care, food and an education for the future of South Africa.

With load shedding, the growth of the economy is left in limbo, as foreign investments plummet and store owners unable to sell goods we have seen a downgrade of the growth forecast.

With the rand weaker and as unstable it seems the woes of the rainbow nation will surely increase if the problem is not addressed.

This is a list of essential things we lose during a power loss

Light, air conditioning, clean water, sewage disposal, food storage, medication storage, life support devices, integrated safety mechanisms, transport and not least of all communications.

Here are a few tips on how to prepare for load shedding

If possible, make sure you have a small generator for your home or business. This will allow you to run essential appliances such as your fridge to keep your food edible, your stove if you have an electric one; it is always a good idea to invest in a gas stove as the blackouts won’t affect your ability to prepare hot meals.

Battery fans are also a brilliant idea to keep you cool during the scorching months South Africa has to endure. Batteries are essential in any prepper’s bag, affording you the use of a variety of items such as flashlights, cell phones, and radios.


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