Red Cross appeals to public to help storm victims

2012-12-14 00:00

THE South African Red Cross is appealing to the public to help victims of the storms that battered the South Coast recently, leaving hundreds homeless and destitute, while the Ugu Disaster Centre has come to the rescue of as many people as possible.

Red Cross (South Coast branch) project manager Mohamed Allyjhan appealed for emergency donations of any kind to assist the victims to rebuild their lives, saying they needed food, clothes and blankets.

“Many people have been left with nothing as result of the recent storm” he said.

Allyjhan said: “The Upper South Coast Umzinto and Park Rynie areas were battered by severe thunderstorms and torrential downpours lasting approximately five hours, with continuous light to heavy rainfall on Monday.”

He said lightning, strong winds and severe downpours had destroyed or damaged mainly roads and buildings. “There has been huge infrastructural damage, power surges, burst pipes, landslides and no network coverage in most areas, leaving the thousands of residents without lights and water,” he said.

The Umdoni Municipality and Ugu Disaster Centre officials are conducting a situational analysis to compile a report that will determine whether the area could qualify to be declared a disaster area, said Allyjhan.

In the meantime, the Red Cross has mobilised volunteers to be on standby in case their assistance is needed again.

Ugu District Municipality and provincial disaster management centres have come to the rescue of 113 households under the Umdoni Municipality.

Ugu Mayor Ntombifikile Gumede said that in Umzumbe Municipality, the storm destroyed 35 houses and nine roads including the Morrison Bridge, while 13 of the damaged houses required rehabilitation.

Umuziwabantu and Ezinqoleni municipalities each reported 10 cases of collapsed houses.

Two roads in Ezinqoleni’s wards 3, 4, and 6 have been damaged. Vulamehlo Municipality suffered major road infrastructure damage and 50 houses were damaged. Qiko Bridge in Ward 7 was washed away and more bridges washed away in Ward 6. Two houses collapsed in wards 9 and 20 in Umganka within the Hibiscus Coast Municipality.

Homeless victims will be temporarily housed at Umzinto Hall and Embetheni Community Church.

Donors should call the Red Cross at 082 200 8186 or 039 682 0205.

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