Chaos as storms batter SA

2012-09-06 22:33

Johannesburg - Dozens of people were displaced, cars were swept away and train services disrupted as stormy weather battered large parts of the country on Thursday.

In Umlazi in KwaZulu-Natal, at least 50 people were left homeless when their shacks were destroyed in landslides.

"They are being housed at a nearby community hall and have been supplied with blankets and food parcels," municipal spokeperson Thabo Mofokeng said in a statement.

Emergency and disaster officials remained on stand-by in areas where residents had been warned of possible floods as torrential rainfall was expected to continue on Friday.

In Johannesburg three vehicles were swept off a bridge on Nancefield Road in Soweto, near the Maponya Hostel.

Emergency services spokesperson Synock Matobako said no one was injured.

"Residents rushed to the scene and helped out all occupants of the three vehicles," spokesman Synock Matobako said.

Metrorail services in Gauteng were disrupted, causing major delays.

"Lightning hit a substation at Pinedene station [in Centurion] which has rendered both lines without overhead power," Passenger Rail Agency (Prasa) spokesperson Lillian Mofokeng.

The outage affected all trains on the Pretoria line to Johannesburg and back.

In Tshwane, the electricity department expressed concern over the city's high power consumption. The city urged residents to turn off non-essential items during the cold weather.

Motorists across the country were also warned to be careful on the wet and slippery roads.

In Gauteng, thunderstorms and heavy rains on Wednesday night caused flooding in Cleveland, Parktown, on the M1 highway at Smit Street, at Klipspruit Valley Road and New Canada Road in Soweto, Johannesburg metro police spokesperson Edna Mamonyane said.

  • mark.a.fysh - 2012-09-06 23:24

    "In Tshwane, the electricity department expressed concern over the city's high power consumption" Since I was without municipal power for five-and-a-half hours this evening, I guess this doesn't apply to me. Their reporting sms line was unresponsive for that time too - great service, not!

      mark.a.fysh - 2012-09-06 23:27

      The sms line came to sudden life after the power was restored and gave me a fault number .... huh?

  • diana.gill.18 - 2012-09-06 23:46

    When all this flooding is going to end?... What is to much is no good.

      jaco.pieterse.18 - 2012-09-07 07:49

      You shouldn't whine about rain and this is not flooding , if you want to see flooding you should go to Thailand in its rain season

      diana.gill.18 - 2012-09-07 14:36

      Why everyone thinks i am whining? If you wanna hear real whining go marry Thai girl.

  • brionyl.french - 2012-09-07 05:37

    and its still coming down

  • brionyl.french - 2012-09-07 05:39

    I wish it would wash Zuma away into a river and into the see... Natural disasters is the EArths way of culling the over populated!!!!

      mike.mike.7140497 - 2012-09-07 07:23

      I love it - wash him away and his aids

  • kabor1 - 2012-09-07 07:06

    thats why its cold down here in Bots yeh

  • Msutukazi Mwahla - 2012-09-07 07:32

    plz Zuma is nothing do with the storm leave him alone ladies and gents plz

      christopher.laurenz.5 - 2012-09-07 09:42

      you tell that to the millions of poor homeless people in the middle of this storm!

      marius.j.rensburg.3 - 2012-09-07 14:47

      a comment like this from a 5 year old, I would understand...jeez.

  • jaco.pieterse.18 - 2012-09-07 07:46

    You should be grateful for the rain !

  • khathu.rasi - 2012-09-07 07:48

    In Limpopo it is still very much dark, its pouring down bigtym

  • olivia.karnak - 2012-09-07 09:18

    I wish some of that rain could come to CT, I definitely wouldn't mind it

  • christina.setloboko - 2012-09-07 12:17

    LOVE THE PICTURE ABOVE!!! when nature takes on no one can predict or know what will happen, i just love nature, anyway sorry for the people affected and just want those who build their shacks next the the river banks and on low grounds, pls think in future -this is just common sense no rocket science.

  • neels.malan.58 - 2012-09-07 19:35

    I do not understand the negativity of weather reporting. Can the benefits of the rain over vast areas be overestimated? Food was put on our tables, while the USA and Europe are struggling with paralyzing droughts. Please tell me: Why is good news no news? This is the reason why I never listen to TV News, rarely read a news paper, and very selectively read the appalling negativity, like this story, on Internet.

  • josie.russell.10 - 2012-09-07 20:40

    It is cold and wet.

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