About alert system

The five-level COVID-19 alert system has been introduced to manage the gradual easing of the lockdown.

This risk-adjusted approach is guided by several criteria, including the level of infections and rate of transmission, the capacity of health facilities, the extent of the implementation of public health interventions and the economic and social impact of continued restrictions.

The country is currently in alert level 3, which was implemented on 1 June 2020.

The country was on alert level 4 from 1 to 31 May 2020.

The country went into lockdown from midnight 26 March to 30 April 2020. (Alert level 5)


We will have a differentiated approach to deal with those areas that have far higher levels of infection and transmission.

These areas will be declared coronavirus hotspots.

A hotspot is defined as an area that has more than 5 infected people per every 100,000 people or where new infections are increasing at a fast pace.

The following metros have been identified as coronavirus hotspots:

  • Tshwane
  • Johannesburg
  • Ekurhuleni
  • Ethekwini
  • Nelson Mandela Bay
  • Buffalo City

Cape Town

The other areas that are hotspots are West Coast, Overberg and Cape Winelands district municipalities in the Western Cape, Chris Hani district in the Eastern Cape, and iLembe district in KwaZulu-Natal.

Alert levels summary

Alert levels