Potholes, streetlights, police: it’s all systems go for the big race

2019-05-23 12:30

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It's all systems go for the Comrades Marathon, with a multi-stakeholder meeting on Wednesday saying preparations are at an advanced stage.

That is according to race director Rowyn James, who told The Witness that the Comrades Marathon Association was given an assurance by Msunduzi on Monday that the route will be in top condition come race day. Meanwhile, pothole contractors Pro-Phalt said they will begin working in earnest to fill up uneven roads from next week. The Comrades Marathon will take place on June 9.

“We just had an event safety and security planning committee meeting called by a high-ranking SAPS officer who is in charge of that side of preparations,” James said.

He said various stakeholders, like traffic officers, disaster management units, fire departments and SAPS departments such as explosives, K9, visible policing and crime intelligence all reported being on track with preparations.

“The meeting went very well. It looks like everything is in order,” he said.

James said there was a high-level meeting with representatives from the Comrades Marathon Association and Msunduzi on Monday where issues of potholes, offline street lights, grass cutting and litter were discussed.

“Potholes are pretty much done along the route, there’s just one or two on Ridge Road and on Fairfield Avenue [in Scottsville].

“Regarding streetlights, we do a test drive along the route at night and we make a list of all the street lights we see that are off, and give that list to Msunduzi. We will follow up with them in a week if they’re not attended to.”

Regarding the condition of roads which fall under the KZN Department of Transport, James said he had noticed teams already repairing the stretch of road between the Lion Park turn-off and the Cato Ridge truck stop on the N3 which forms part of the race route. “We’ve been doing this for 94 years, so we know how to get things on track,” he said.

Pro-Phalt site manager Gerard Lowe said, meanwhile, that the team will begin repairing the Comrades route next week once they’ve completed the roads around the Royal Showgrounds. He said: “We’re slowly getting there. We’ve not even touched some areas, but we’re going according to plan.”

Msunduzi Municipality did not respond to a query regarding their preparations for the event.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  comrades marathon

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