300 families flee floods in KZN

2011-01-05 08:34

Pietermaritzburg - About 300 families were forced to vacate their houses when five towns in KwaZulu-Natal were hit by floods as a result of heavy rains between Monday morning and Tuesday afternoon.

The affected towns are Newcastle, Ladysmith, Nquthu and Nkandla in the northern KZN and Harding on the South Coast.

Ladysmith was the hardest hit when flood­waters surged over the banks of the Klip River, flooding about 50 houses.

Emnambithi/Ladysmith Municipality Deputy Mayor Fana Madlala described the situation as “really bad”.

“We are trying to bring the situation back to normality,” he said.

Water, damage

He said a taxi rank in the town’s CBD had to be closed and minibus taxis relocated to other areas.

He said 30 other houses in nearby Driefontein and its surrounds were also flooded.

Witness reporter Chris Ndaliso reported from Ladysmith that traffic was chaotic in Murchison and Alexandra streets.

He said a large part of Lyell Street had to be closed as traffic officers diverted vehicles.

“While most shops have lots of water inside, Johannesburg and Bergville taxi ranks had to be shut down,” said Ndaliso.

Newcastle Municipality Mayor Afzul Rehman said the swelling of Ngagane River left 50 houses flooded. Five of the houses were damaged.

Rehman said the river started to rise at about 01:00 on Monday and subsided at about 05:00 on Tuesday.

Residents warned

“We had warned residents earlier about the danger, and they managed to escape in time,” Rehman added.

Pictures taken in Newcastle and sent to The Witness also showed lots of water on the streets.

The disaster manager in the provincial Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Jonty Ndlazi, said teams were sent to assess the situation in the flooded areas.

Ndlazi said about 200 houses were flooded in the KwaMadlala area of Harding.

Lennox Mabaso, a department spokesperson, said the province was experiencing heavy flooding.

“The city of Ladysmith is experiencing huge traffic volumes in one of its operational main roads,” he said.

Mabaso said that by Tuesday afternoon there were no injuries reported as a result of the flooding.

He said the MEC, Nomusa Dube, went to Ladysmith to assess the situation and that the disaster management team was in control of the situation.

Roads affected

KZN Transport Department spokesperson Kwanele Ncalane said most roads in the province have been affected by the floods.

“In northern KwaZulu-Natal in the areas of Nquthu and Nkandla a bridge was severely damaged and vehicles cannot use it,” said Ncalane. He said the team has been dispatched to compile a report on how the department can help.

SA Weather Service forecaster Lucky Makhwedzha said there is a 60% chance of showers in the province.

“On Wednesday and Thursday we expect cloudy conditions with 60% showers,” he said.

More showers are expected on Friday, but the likelihood will fall to 30% and there are no forecasts of flooding, Makhwedzha said.

- Additional reporting by Sapa

-  Were you affected? Send us your photos and eyewitness accounts

  • JudithNkwe - 2011-01-05 09:38

    Already we have had over the average rainfall for January in Johannesburg plus three times the December average. Why so few flood reports for Gauteng, as there have to have been a lot?

  • SiphovdMerwe - 2011-01-05 09:38

    This government is so corrupt. 60% chances of rain whilst Capetonians haven't seen a drizzle since New Year's eve. What a banana republic. What do you expect from cadres.

      Uncle Charli - 2011-01-05 11:00

      SiphovdMerwe, you're worse than a banana republic citizen!! Honestly, you have no cooking clue of what you're talking about...actually I'm suprised that you even know how to get onto a computer!!!! You should not be allowed to breed at all, even if it were monkeys!!!

      SiphovdMerwe - 2011-01-05 11:24

      Comrade Uncle Charli sir, I will not allow you to discriminate against this poor curvy fruits simply because they bear no seeds. It is also very counter-evolutionary for you to breed monkeys. On the other hand, if we don't breed monkeys, then what's gonna happen to all the bananas in the republic? "Get onto a computer", is it even legal to use such grammar. You can get Uncle Charli out of Brakpan, but you can't get Brakpan out of Uncle Charli. It's 36º celcius in CT, I am going to buy some shorts

      walshcraig - 2011-01-05 12:24

      BWAAAAAAHHAAAAAA Sipho you too fuunneee guy.......... hahahaha nice one, needed a laugh today

  • Dan - 2011-01-05 09:51

    Must be poor planning and poor engineering input. The rain most certainly did not justify a 50 year or 100 year flood, so basically poor planning is to blame for the floods. Maybe its time that professional engineers certifying 1:50 and 1:100 year fllodlines be brought to book.

  • Annelize - 2011-01-05 10:23

    Dit is nie apartheid, die nuwe regering of mense se skuld dat dit reen nie: JESUS laat reen val, na SY goedheid!!! Dink tog `n slag voordat julle sulke onbenullige aantuigings maak. Die LAND moet `n slag hulle harte en oë na GOD draai; dan sal dit baie beter gaan met almal!

      anschenb - 2011-01-05 10:38

      AMEN - en weet julle wat - ons leef in die laaste dae ... dink bietjie - so baie profesië is vervul - nog net 'n handvol is oor. Jesus kom weer op die wolke, die trompette gaan blaas - al die tekens is daar

      Natsumi - 2011-01-05 16:14

      @Darwinian...Well you know whatever makes them sleeps them at night you know...Personally I thank FSM for all the rain.

  • Annemarie - 2011-01-05 12:04

    Sterkte vir almal in Ladysmith, dis een van die skoonste dorpe in die land waar daar nog op ou Kersdag tot laat in die Munsipale kantore gewek word en met vriendelike diens!

  • Bman_01 - 2011-01-06 08:41

    Is Dube the same person asking scientist to investigate lightning whats is she going ask now "Eish what causes all this rain we must put together a panel of expats eish no experts to investiagte this" lol

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