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Ageing infrastructure Eskom's problem, not skills shortfall - head of generation

Eskom’s head of generating units Rhulani Mathebula said that they needed to reinvent the wheel and come up with effective ways of servicing the ageing equipment.

FIRE: Eskom's Kendal Power Station is coal-fired and situated in Mpumalanga. Picture: eskom.co.za

JOHANNESBURG - Eskom’s head of generating units Rhulani Mathebula said that the utility needed to find a better way of dealing with the old infrastructure at its power stations.

South Africa will face another day of intermittent rolling blackouts as technicians are working to return many units that have gone offline due to a constrained system.

Eskom said that loadshedding would kick in from 8am on Wednesday morning and would last until 10pm.

• How to check your load shedding schedule

The utility said that power cuts were not as a result of cold weather but had much to do with its equipment.

Mathebula said that much like South Africans, the utility was equally concerned about the failure of power plants.

He said that they needed to reinvent the wheel and come up with effective ways of servicing the ageing equipment.

"What is not well is the high numbers of failures that we are seeing versus our own predictions on the amount of work and processes that we have put in place."

Mathebula said that they did not have a shortfall of skills but the challenge they were facing was in dealing with unreliable infrastructure.

"We've also got our OEMs who are supporting us in this, the companies that designed thee boilers are supporting us in maintaining them as well."

The utility has been assuring South Africans for many years that it would get its house in order but has continued with loadshedding.

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