Western Cape's Disaster Management Assess Damage of Heavy Downpours | Western Cape Government

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Western Cape's Disaster Management Assess Damage of Heavy Downpours

18 November 2013

The Western Cape Disaster Management Centre (WCDMC) has since Friday, 15 November 2013 been called to monitor the flood situation in the Province and is currently scaling down operations.

Joint Operation Flood Meetings were convened on Monday, 18 November 2013 with all stakeholders to ascertain the damage, losses and emergency operations in the Province.

The South African Weather Service indicated that no further rain is expected for Monday, apart from a few showers along the south-coast at first and possible isolated afternoon thundershowers over the central-interior of the country. All the weather alerts are disseminated to all the relevant stakeholders.

Update as of Monday, 18 November 2013, the Western Cape is still reeling from the effects of the heavy downpours that occurred on Friday, 15 November 2013. The Helderberg area felt the brunt of the weather onslaught, resulting in massive evacuations at medical facilities, care facilities as well as residential areas.

Areas most affected are Somerset West, Strand, Sir Lowry’s Pass Village, Hout Bay and Muizenberg. It was also reported that a few homes near Sir Lowry’s Pass Village and Da Gama Street in Strand incurred some damage. Chapman’s Peak is still closed due to rock falls and mud slides. Nine thousand people were adversely affected in the City of Cape Town due to the inclement weather.

The City has also reported that approximately 44 informal settlements were affected with 4631 informal settlement dwellings and 18 220 residents are experiencing discomfort. Damage assessments are currently underway.

The City is also experiencing electricity disruptions, as well as trees that were blown over. One motor vehicle fatality was also reported in the Ottery area. It must still be determined whether this motor vehicle accident can be attributed to the prevailing inclement conditions.

Incidents of flooding were reported in the Cape Winelands, Overberg District and Eden District Municipality. No major damages were reported in the Eden District Municipality, except for eight families that were cut-off in Albertinia. Social relief is provided to those stranded families. Several informal and formal dwellings were affected in the towns of Caledon, Gansbaai, Mount Pleasant, Hermanus, Barrydale and Swellendam in the Overberg District Municipality.

Officials are in the process of compiling detailed damage assessments.

The railway line in Caledon is damaged. In Worcester, the Cape Winelands District Municipality, a portion of the Stettynskloof pipeline that supplies portable water to the town of Worcester has been washed away as a result of the heavy rains. Municipal officials are currently attempting to replace the washed away section of pipeline. Residents and industries of the town of Worcester are advised to use water sparingly for the next 24-hours until the main supply line has been restored.

Provincial Traffic has reported that several roads were still closed due to flooding which includes the R44, Clarence Drive close to Kleinmond due to rock falls, R43, Stanford/Hermanus, closed due to water logged roads and the Franschhoek Pass between Franschhoek and Villiersdorp. Caution is exercised on the Slanghoek Road near Goudini/ Rawsonville (off N1) as the road is affected due to mudslides. Meiringspoort near De rust is still being monitored.

Divers are still searching for the missing person in the Jonkershoek area as well for a car that was swept away in the current from a low water bridge in the Grabouw area. Western Cape Disaster Management is monitoring the situation and all disaster management centres are on high alert.

All relevant contingency plans are in place. The following concerns are currently the water supply to the Worcester area, damage to formal and informal housing, the road network as well as agricultural soil.

Media Enquiries: 

Jacqueline Pandaram
Director: Disaster Operations
Cell: 083 440 9698
E-mail: jacqueline.pandarama@westerncape.gov.za

Ministers Liaison Officer:
Peter Pullen
Cell: 082 574 3773
E-mail: peter.pullen@westerncape.gov.za