Cape Town Security During Load Shedding

    Jun 09, 2020 @ 02:37 PM / by Zach Rossignol

    Cape Town South Africa security during load shedding - 900

    View of an eletrified fence in Cape Town, South Africa. Photo taken by AIRINC Surveyor Zach Rossignol.

    Staged Load Shedding in South Africa

    I arrived in Cape Town during Stage 4 load shedding, when state-run energy company Eskom was conducting one of four scheduled two-hour blackouts. In Camps Bay, I passed expatriate quality homes along the water and saw that every home displayed a large security company sticker like the one shown above. I also noticed that, even during a blackout, electric fences were still buzzing.

    During my survey, I asked housing sources how residents handle home security during load shedding. It’s an unfortunate reality, but crime rates tend to spike during these hours, as criminals target vulnerable neighborhoods where outages compromise security systems. Home security companies report that calls increase exponentially at these times.


    Cape Town South Africa load shedding schedule


    Backup power during load shedding

    It’s the tenant’s responsibility to have a backup power supply during load shedding. Whether it’s a backup battery system, a generator, solar panels, or a mix of all three—tenants must ensure their home has enough power to keep essential security features running. Tenants are also encouraged to use padlocks, deadbolts, burglar bars, and other security features that are not dependent on electricity.

    Tenants living in gated communities pay a security levy, often included in the rent, that covers backup power supplies. Sources mentioned that there are no electric grids independent of Eskom, but there’s planned legislation that will allow Cape Town to source out IPP (Independent Power Producers) to help fill this void. AIRINC will continue to monitor tenant’s responsibilities for home security.




    On-site Insight: 

    This post is part of AIRINC's On-site Insight series. On-site Insight provides readers with an exclusive “behind-the-surveys” perspective of new and existing expatriate locations based on commentary and photos from our global research team. Included is information on general living conditions as well as changing costs for both Goods & Services and Housing & Utilities, along with much, much more.


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    Topics: Housing, On-site Insight, Hardship, Expatriate Housing, Global Mobility, Insights and Experience, Cape Town, South Africa, Utilities, Johannesburg, Durban

    Zach Rossignol

    Written by Zach Rossignol

    Zach joined AIRINC in the summer of 2013 as a surveyor and analyst conducting international pricing and housing surveys around the globe. He’s since been promoted to Senior Housing Analyst and is responsible for training new hires in housing methodology, client inquiry responses, social media management, and directing the quarterly release of housing and utility data for thousands of locations worldwide. He received his B.A. in History from High Point University and is based in Cambridge, MA.