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Power theft aggravates winter power outages

The winter is fast approaching, and the City is already facing an increase in power interruptions due to the higher demand for electricity brought on by the colder weather.

According to the metro, illegal connections and meter bypass rub salt into the wound and at times lead to the destruction of transformers.

As per usual, in winter residents suffer more intermittent power outages, forcing thousands of families to go hours or days without power – as the demand often overwhelm the City’s power grid.

“Occurrence of overload tripping is higher during peak hours: 5am to 7.30am and 5pm to 8pm. “The City is intensifying the means to fight the scourge of illegal connections by continuously identifying and monitoring hot spots that have more frequent power failures, and address them speedily,” said metro spokesperson Zweli Dlamini.

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Dlamini pointed out the City has invested resources to strengthen the power supply grid in identified places in preparation for winter. He, however, stated the strengthening of the network system can only be a success if there is no tampering with electricity infrastructure, such as illegal connections and meter bypassing.

“When residents bypass electricity meters, voltage network and transformers fail as the overload protection for the transformer is no longer functional,” explained Dlamini.

The City cautioned customers who have their electricity supply disconnected or their prepaid meter blocked due to credit control measures to first make necessary arrangements with the finance department before their supply can be restored.

Customers are urged to report outages to the City’s call centre on 0860 543 000 or use Mo CoE App. Customers must get a reference number after logging a call.

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