'Over 200 people evacuated from their homes overnight'

KZN confirms another round of flooding misery

One of the properties in uMdloti in the KwaZulu-Natal north coast damaged by floods following heavy rainfall between Friday evening and Sunday morning.
One of the properties in uMdloti in the KwaZulu-Natal north coast damaged by floods following heavy rainfall between Friday evening and Sunday morning.
Image: Ant Tulleken

As KwaZulu-Natal continues to experience heavy rains that are causing floods in the area, more than 200 people have been evacuated from their homes.

MEC for co-operative governance and traditional affairs Sipho Hlomuka provided an update and said the rain is continuing to cause havoc.

“Overnight, the province yet again underwent some of the worst storms that have been accompanied by floods resulting in the destruction that comes with such situations. We are yet to receive a full comprehensive report on the impact of these latest heavy rains, but as reports come in a worrying picture is however emerging,” Hlomuka said.

The MEC said the storm, according to the SA Weather Service (SAWS) prediction, was yesterday to move up the coast, affecting the northern districts of King Cetshwayo and Mkhanyakude.

Hlomuka said the province received level 10 early alert warnings from the weather service about disruptive rainfall predicted for the Hluhluwe, eThekwini, Jozini, KwaDukuza, Mandeni, Maphumulo, Mkhambathini, Mthonjaneni, Mtubatuba, Ndwedwe, Nongoma, Ulundi, Umdoni, Umhlabuyalingana, uMhlathuze, uMlalazi and uPhongolo municipal areas.

So far the greatest impact is expected along the coastal and north-eastern parts of the province.

He said the heavy rainfalls have resulted in flooding of roads and human settlements, and damaged properties, with several roads around Pinetown and surrounding areas temporarily closed due to flooding.

Several roads and bridges in eThekwini, especially uMdloti, La Mercy and others have also been affected and road users have been urged to be on the alert.

“We understand that some areas are inaccessible and have become islands at this stage. Water levels are being closely monitored in various areas that are prone to flooding so that appropriate measures will be effected.

“As the number of calls at the control centre has increased, the department has appealed to the SANDF to be deployed to the northern parts of Durban for urgent response. The metro police and fire department are assisting with water pumping and road closures where the roads are affected,” he said.

Hlomuka said there are currently 82 care centres with the capacity to accommodate 3,186 people. 

The Westbrook retirement village was evacuated. A total of 190 people have been evacuated and the fire brigade unit has assisted with pumping water into the hall.

Hlomuka said the iLembe district was badly affected with several households being left homeless and the road network infrastructure affected.

In King Cetshwayo, the walls of a home collapsed due to heavy rains and wind.

“A family of nine members living in a one-room house has been moved following damage to their house,” Hlomuka said.

He said relief interventions are ongoing to ensure that all community halls accommodating displaced people receive adequate relief assistance, social support services and medical assistance.

Every municipality have been tasked to identify and allocate community halls to be used as temporary shelters.

“Sector departments and other stakeholders (NGOs) have been advised to activate their respective contingency plans to ensure that the damaged public infrastructure is repaired immediately,” he said. 

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