‘It is a health hazard’

2019-11-26 16:48
A Cleland resident had to keep her dogs locked up after water flooded her yard due to a burst water pipe.PHOTO: nompilo kunene

A Cleland resident had to keep her dogs locked up after water flooded her yard due to a burst water pipe.PHOTO: nompilo kunene

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A Cleland family were unable to leave their home yesterday because their yard and driveway was flooded by water leaking from a burst water pipe outside their property.

The woman, who asked not to be named fearing reprisal from her landlord and victimisation by the municipality, told The Witness on Monday that this was the second burst pipe leak that has flooded her yard in the six months she has stayed on the property.

When The Witness visited the home yesterday, the woman was busy mopping the water from her veranda. She said when they went to bed on Sunday night, all was well and when they woke up on Monday, they found their yard completely flooded.

“Some of the water came into the house but fortunately nothing was damaged. I have four children and six dogs and this water in the yard makes it hard for the kids to go to school and the dogs to run around freely,” said the woman.

She said making matters worse was the swamp that had formed due to the blocked drainage system across the street from her home which was making her children sick. At a glance, the swamp looks natural but residents told The Witness that it used to be a small stream of running water but it became backed up due to the rubbish blocking the drainage system.

“The swamp is a health hazard. There are mosquitoes all over. My children’s school thought the kids were suffering from some kind of contagious skin disease because of the mosquito bites and they were told not to come back to school until their skin clears up. We don’t know what to do,” said the mother.

A neighbour, who operates a business fixing trucks on his property, told The Witness that they have been reporting the issue of the burst water pipe and the swamp for years now, but nothing has been done about it.

“We call the call centre but no one ever answers the phones so we usually ask people we know working for the municipality to try and help us report the matter. Every time we report this they come out to stop the leak but they never do anything about the swamp. A few months later it leaks again, and they only fix that again and leave. We need the municipality to come up with a permanent solution for this problem,” he said.

The man also said he cannot use a large part of his yard because it has also turned into a swamp.

Msunduzi Municipality spokesperson Thobeka Mafumbatha said the problem has been located and that a truck was dispatched to the area on Monday.

“The workers will be working until late to address the problem which was a major burst pipe which also got affected as a result of storm water,” she said.

Mafumbatha also promised that the blocked drainage, which has caused the swamp, will be cleared on Tuesday.


Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  service delivery
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