ZESA Holdings yesterday published a tight load shedding schedule that will see towns across the country without power between 4AM and 10PM almost on a daily basis. The country is experiencing serious blackouts blamed on breakdowns and repairs at the power plants.
Low water levels at Lake Kariba have worsened the situation at Kariba Power Station.
The load shedding schedule published by Zesa Holdings subsidiary, the Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company, indicated that most of Harare’s suburbs will be without power between 4AM and 10PM, while other towns will be affected between 5AM and 10PM.
The power firm said the load shedding would be worse if the power supply situation deteriorated. The punishing load shedding schedule was attributed to low water levels at Kariba, among other challenges facing the power company.
“The Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company is experiencing increased power shortfalls due to low water levels at Kariba Power Station, generation constraints at Hwange Power Station and limited imports,” said the power company.
“The power shortfall is being managed through load shedding in order to balance the power supply available and the demand. Previously published winter load shedding schedules have been reviewed in line with the increased shortfalls owing to the depressed generation levels at Kariba Power Station.
“In the event of further deterioration of the current available power supply, the level and duration of load shedding may go beyond the advertised schedules.”
The power company urged users to be conservative in their electricity usage.
“Every effort is being directed at improving the generation capacity to ensure that supply disruptions are kept at minimum levels,” it said.
According to the load shedding schedule, in Harare, northern and eastern suburbs like Alexandra Park, Athlone, Chisipite and Glen Lorne will not be having electricity from 4AM to 10PM for three to four days in a week.
The same applies for southern suburbs like Hatfield, Waterfalls, Queensdale and Mbare.
A similar load shedding schedule applies for suburbs like Mabvuku, Greendale, Mandara, Highlands, Westlea, Tynwald, Kuwadzana, Glen View, Budiriro and Warren Park.
The same tight load shedding schedule will apply in Bulawayo where most suburbs will be without power between 4AM and 10PM for the better part of the week.
For Gweru, Masvingo Chinhoyi, Marondera and Mutare, the worst load shedding will be on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 5AM to 10PM. The same situation will apply to other towns like Bindura, Kadoma, Kwekwe, Zvishavane, Shurugwi and Redcliff.
The load shedding schedule is designed in such a way that electricity is only available between midnight and early hours of the morning when most users are asleep.