News24

Kruger Park camps still cut off

2012-01-19 14:06

Johannesburg - A number of rest camps in the Kruger National Park remained inaccessible on Thursday after heavy rains earlier in the week, SA National Parks (SANParks) said.

Talamati, Buyamiti and Shimuwini camps were still cut off, spokesperson Reynold Thakhuli said in a statement on the SANParks website.

The Talamati and Balule camps were flooded, while six tents at Lower Sabie had to be evacuated.

The staff village, camp site, swimming pool and filling station at Letaba were also swamped.

At Skukuza, one staff house was flooded and the indigenous nursery was damaged, but the water level rested on the boundary fence. No serious damage had been reported at the rest camp.

The road between Skukuza and Tskokwane was still closed with the high level bridge intact, but blocked by debris.

Gravel roads still closed

The Crocodile Bridge road remained shut, but the rest camp of the same name was undamaged as the water had stopped rising 50m from the fence.

All gravel roads south of the Letaba River were still closed at noon on Thursday.

On Wednesday, precautionary evacuations were carried out in low lying areas, including staff accommodation and river view chalets.

Some guests had to be evacuated to accommodation outside the game reserve.

Mpumalanga officials said tankers would provide water to residents after several treatment plants were affected by the heavy rains this week.

Residents supplied by the Ntunda, Sibange, Langeloop and Masibekela water treatment plants would be provided with water, said co-operative governance spokesperson Simphiwe Kunene.

Mpumalanga co-operative governance department head David Mahlobo and Nkomazi Mayor Thuli Khoza had conducted an assessment of flood damage in Nkomazi, he said.

Families needing reallocation

The areas most affected were Tonga, Block A, B and C, Masibekela, Driekoppies, Mangweni, Steenbok, Naas, and Sibange.

"Fourteen families have been affected and need reallocation, while 16 families were affected without needing to be relocated," Kunene said.

All the families would receive food parcels and blankets.

The municipality posted signs to redirect traffic on roads and bridges deemed unsafe after heavy rains on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Kunene said his department would engage with the department of public works and the SA National Roads Agency Limited to repair damage, such as debris and potholes caused by the flood.