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Eskom declares 'power supply emergency'

The power utility says supply will be vulnerable for the next week and a half.

The power utility has released a schedule for possible load shedding.

JOHANNESBURG - Eskom has declared a power supply emergency.

The power utility has released a schedule for possible load shedding similar to the one implemented in 2008 which resulted in rolling blackouts.

On Tuesday, Eskom said its emergency request to large businesses and the public to reduce energy consumption by at least 10 percent is due to the need for major maintenance work.

The power utility says the electricity grid is severely constrained due to the loss of additional generating units from its power stations and the extensive use of emergency reserves.

Eskom's Andrew Etzinger says supply will be vulnerable for the next week and a half.

"We are working very hard to make sure we don't get back into the situation we have previously found ourselves in. At the same time, we are asking the public to work with us and use electricity sparingly which will certainly aid the situation."

It's not clear at this stage when supply will be stabilised.

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