'The storm caused huge havoc' - Msunduzi responds on crippling outages

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Northdale primary substation blew up recently after a storm.
Northdale primary substation blew up recently after a storm.
Londiwe Xulu

Msunduzi municipality released a statement on Thursday's storm late on Friday evening.

"On the 30th of December 2021, a strong storm consisting of heavy rain and a hailstorm ripped through most of the wards within the jurisdiction of Msunduzi Municipality. The heavy rains caused flooding in various wards, uprooting trees, with water overflowing the low level bridges.

"The storm caused huge havoc, damaging houses, vehicles, carports, windows and the infrastructure. A number of injuries were also report from different wards; four people have been hospitalized.

"The Emergency Control Centre immediately activated the various services including Disaster Management, Traffic services, Fire rescue, municipal security, parks and recreation, drainage. The disaster management teams commenced with mop-up operations in various areas to assess the damage and provide necessary relief. A report of about 200 damaged houses from areas including Mpumuza, kwaPata, Ashdown, Imbali, Bisley and Sobantu and people were left destitute. The Municipality is closely monitoring the situation and stakeholders have been engaged to provide necessary support to the affected people."

Addressing power outages, the City said, "The municipality received a number of complaints regarding power outages and the electricity department has been attending to those complaints. More complaints relating to street and storm water have also been received and are being attended to."

ELECTRICITY 

"The major storms which occurred on 15, 22 and 30 December 2021 led to further breakdowns and recurring outages. The continuous rains in between have affected the progress repairs and restoration. The teams from electricity are responding to infrastructure damages as a result of the impact of the storm and the activities include fault finding and location, switching operations, cable faults repairs, pole replacements, transformer replacements, overhead wires replacements and restringing, cutting and removal of trees that fell on electricity infrastructure.

"The following are incidents have been reported as a result of the recent storm and are being attended to:The Retief Primary Sub-station to Liberty Midlands Mall was flooded and an MT trip affecting Liberty Mall, Chase Valley, VCC, Townbush and surrounding areas. Retief primary to Chatterton / Hyslop – 11KV apparatus affecting chase valley, Montrose, parts of Wembley, Old Howick Road.Bombay EPS – MV trip affecting Site 11, Woodlands, Part of Northdale and surrounding areas,Yarborough/ Balhambra Estate - 11 KV circuit affecting parts of Mkhondeni, yarborough road and surrounding.A suspected trip at Northdale to Khan/ Zubeda affecting part of Raisethorpe, Allandale, Dunveria and Belfort."

WASTE MANAGEMENT 

The city said the collection of domestic waste may be delayed as a result of damaged roads that the collection trucks can't get through during the storm.

"The England Road Landfill site took strain in terms access roads that require an urgent rehabilitation, in order for vehicles to be able access the working phase of the disposal cells. The waste accumulated as a result of the storm is being cleared in order to ensure that no litter is moved into the drains. 

"In relation to the CBD Regeneration campaign, the Municipality has received about 150 EPWP workers from the Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs (EDTEA) and 1000 EPWP workers from Municipal Infrastructure Support Agent (MISA). The teams will assist in terms of implementing the plan to address illegal dumping and waste scattered around the city as a result of the storm. The teams will resume their duties by Wednesday, 5th of January 2022.

"The support received from MISA further include the tools of trade in order to also assist in clearing the blocked drainage system in the City and Municipal wards as affected by the storm."

BLOCKED DRAINS 

Regarding reports of blocked drains in the CBD, Old Greytown Road, Bombay Road and Zwartkop/Stott Road, the City said the drainage department is attending to them.

"The municipality has been experiencing a challenge with blocked drains as a result of illegal dumping. The large amounts of litter that accumulates in storm waterways impedes the free flow of storm water. The Municipality is appealing to the members of the public to ensure that litter is disposed of responsibly in the bin and not on the streets."

BURST PIPES

"Reports of burst water pipes have also been received from areas such as Lincoln Meade, Ashdown, Lynnfield Park, Willow fountain, Copesville, Eastwood, and Fairmead and are being attended.

"The disaster management teams are still on the ground conducting assessments on the damaged and implementing interventions to assist affected families. The Municipality is urging residents to exercise extreme caution and those experiencing any weather related incidents to report such incidents to their Ward Councillors or the Municipality’s Emergency Control Centre on 0333923725/ 0333922924/ 0333922504."

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