Surviving Load Shedding
- Security News South Africa
- 17 Aug, 2020
Load-Shedding has certainly become a buzz-word in South Africa over the past few years. And just when you think it’s over….Boom, you get hit yet again. Courtesy of our “not so favourite” electricity service provider, we have had to deal with constant black-outs that have had us cursing left right and centre.
You’re in the middle of an all-important zoom meeting and just as it’s your turn to speak - Lights out. You don’t have a back-up generator and you rely on Wifi so you’ve just abruptly lost connection to your meeting without uttering a word. On top of that, your laptop battery hasn’t been charged so it’s on the verge of dying. Annoying, we know.
Fortunately, there are a few steps we can take to make load shedding less unpleasant and more manageable. It’s up to us to take advantage of the tools we have access to and use them to our benefit. We understand that blackouts can be extremely frustrating and highly inconvenient so here are a few tips and tricks that you can adopt the next time the power goes out.
The first and most obvious thing to do would be to check your load shedding schedule or listen to updates on your local radio station or TV channels. There are also load shedding apps that can be downloaded so you will know just when it’s going to hit your area. You can re-schedule meetings around load shedding times and try to get your online work done ahead of the black out.
Always Make Sure You’re Charged Up
It doesn’t take too much effort to pick up a charger and plug it into the wall. It will save you in the long-run. Always make sure that your laptop, mobile devices, rechargeable batteries for torches and lights, music boxes etc, are always charged. If you don’t require Wifi to work, at least you will be able to continue with your daily tasks on a fully charged laptop. Having a Power Bank and car cell phone chargers around can also come in extremely handy. If you have a home alarm system, then back-up batteries for your system should be an essential.
Back Up Your Data
You never know when a hard drive may crash so be on the safe side and back-up any or all important data to a cloud.
Gas Cylinder And Cooker Top
If you don’t own one of these classic South African combos, then there has never been a better time than now to invest in one. Cadac’s gas cylinder and cooker top will ensure you always have a warm meal or hot cup of coffee especially during those dreaded cold winter night black-outs. PS: Make sure there are no gas leaks and always remember to switch off gas appliances when you've finished using them.
Rechargeable Lights And Torches
No more sitting in the dark if you have any of these in your home. Keep them in an easy to find place so when you’re faced with total darkness, you can reach it easily and quickly. Rechargeable LED lanterns and torches are powerful and will full your room with light on the darkest nights. Great for when you have kids in the house that need to study or, you need light in your garage to finish up on a DIY project
Go The Solar Route
Invest in solar lights, geysers or cell phone chargers. Solar lights can be charged all day in the sunlight. Mount them outside where you get the most sun for an extended period of time. They have sensors that will detect darkness and switch on automatically. It’s great for security conscious individuals
Buy A Generator
Not everyone can afford a generator. We know that it is obviously the more expensive option but if your budget allows it then you should buy one. There are options to choose from depending on your needs. If you just want to keep smaller items such as your TV and fridge running, then invest in a small one. For those who want to power their entire home, then the bigger ones should do the trick. You will enjoy a Wifi connection, be able to cook, watch TV and more.
- Remember, to avoid any power surges when the electricity is restored, always switch off or unplug your electrical appliances
- Alternatively, you could install surge protection to avoid or minimise the damage to your equipment.
- Never use your generator in an enclosed area or even inside your home.
- If you're using candles, keep them out of reach of children. Teach them about fire safety and if possible, have a fire extinguisher close by.
We hope that you will utilise these tips when load shedding hits your area. ‘Til next time, here is your quote of the day.
“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail” - Benjamin Franklin