Joint effort gets murky Mkondeni Spruit fixed at last

2019-05-14 17:08
Hayfields resident Veronica Tooke plays in the newly clean Mkondeni Spruit after it had been filled with sewage since 2017. PHOTOS: ian carbutt

Hayfields resident Veronica Tooke plays in the newly clean Mkondeni Spruit after it had been filled with sewage since 2017. PHOTOS: ian carbutt

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The once murky, sewage-filled Mkondeni Spruit is being restored to its former glory following repairs to broken and leaking sewers that had gone unfixed since 2017.

The Witness reported in October 2017 that burst and blocked sewer pipes combined with illegally discharged factory effluent were destroying wildlife in the area.

The Mkondeni Spruit, which runs through Hayfields and the Maritzburg Golf Club and leads into the Duzi, was a dirty stream, scattered with pieces of toilet paper, frothy effluent, and sewage sludge. At the time resident Veronica Tooke, whose property borders the stream, said when she moved into her Collins Road home several years ago she often enjoyed the sights of fish, crabs and frogs swimming in the stream.

However, toward the end of 2017, Tooke had had enough of the sewage stench, especially after noticing a decline in the wildlife in the area.

Talking to The Witness on Monday, Tooke said the sewers and blocked pipes along the Mkondeni Spruit had started being fixed a few months ago.

The polluted river photographed in October 2017. 

Tooke said the Msunduzi Municipality commissioned Greendoor Environmental (a local company) to fix all the sewers and blockages along the river.

“The Duzi-Umgeni Conservation Trust (Duct) has also been involved, as well as our local community through our WhatsApp group,” she said.

“Many hands were involved,” she said.

“I am so excited now that it’s clean. Greendoor Environmental is here early, they clean up after they are done for the day and are just doing a wonderful job.

“Hopefully the fish and crabs and other wildlife that used to frequent the stream will return now.”

Tooke added that now the river was free from the sewage, they could notify the municipality whenever they noticed effluent spills from industry instead of “trying to figure out what is from industry and what is from the sewers”.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  sewage

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