Havoc in KZN: seven dead, 100s homeless

2009-11-21 00:00

KWAZULU-NATAL was mopping up after the torrential rains and winds that wreaked havoc in the pro­vince, leaving seven people dead and hundreds homeless.

Trees were uprooted and blocked the roads, low brid­ges were flooded and people were displaced in some parts of the province when their houses were damaged.

Seven people were killed during the storm, a spokesman for Local Government and Rural Development, Vernon Mchunu, said yesterday.

Among the dead were three pupils who drowned while crossing a river on their way home from school in Port Shepstone on Thursday.

“The premier, MEC for Local Government Nomusa Dube and other MECs visited all affected areas,” said Mchunu

In Pietermaritzburg, informal settlements were also affected by the heavy and sustained rain, with more than 180 houses, home to about 350 people, damaged.

John Gutridge of Msunduzi Municipality Disaster Management said all areas were affected, but no people were displaced.

In Durban, eThekwini Municipality reported extensive damage to houses in the city’s townships.

“More than 100 families were left homeless after the roofs of their homes were blown away,” eThekwini Mayor Obed Mlaba said.”

The affected people will be housed in tents and halls until the situation returns to normal. A disaster management committee was formed to respond to the situation.

The eThekwini Emergency Centre is on call 24 hours at 031 361 0000 to assist with any emergency. — WR.

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