Power outages, flooding, crashes and persistent rain in Gauteng

02 December 2021 - 15:59
By Shonisani Tshikalange
A big cut-off low weather system is expected to bring rainfall to the central and western parts of the country over the weekend. Stock photo.
Image: 123RF/Surut Wattanamaetee A big cut-off low weather system is expected to bring rainfall to the central and western parts of the country over the weekend. Stock photo.

Persistent rain caused power outages and flooding in some roads in parts of Johannesburg on Thursday.

City Power spokesperson Isaac Mangena said they had about 1,400 pending calls early on Thursday, with more than 500 of those having been open for more than 24 hours.

“The majority of these outages were reported in areas south of Joburg, Randburg, Roodepoort and the Hursthill area which includes Westdene, Mayfair and surroundings.

“It is true that we have some backlogs we are dealing with, partly due to the impact of the recent persistent rainstorms, but also we had not fully recovered from load-shedding. Both these add to the pressure we are under in responding to outage calls.”

Mangena said the impact of vandalism of infrastructure and cable theft was also big.

“We have, however, moved the needle in terms of dealing with maintenance backlogs and continue with our plans. We are beefing up resources in the areas with many repeat outages. We have started an emergency procurement process for some of the material that we anticipate may quickly run short, especially joints and terminations,” he said.

Tshwane Emergency Services were monitoring several low-lying bridges in the Centurion area as rainy weather continued.

The SA Weather Service (Saws) said a “big cut-off low weather system” was expected to bring rain to parts of the country into the weekend. 

“We are monitoring the Centurion area because the Rietvlei Dam was overflowing the other day ... but we are seeing that the water is subsiding. Yesterday we had to close End Street low-water bridge due to concerns about the water coming from the Rietvlei Dam. So far we are managing everything and there haven’t been any incidents reported,” Tshwane EMS spokesperson Charles Mabaso said.

Johannesburg metro police spokesperson Xolani Fihla said one person had died in a vehicle crash early on Thursday.

“Six accidents were reported and one of these was fatal. It happened on the N1 south in the waterfall before the Buccleugh interchange.”

“We have received reports of flooding on Klipspruit Valley Road in Orlando West in Soweto, next to Maponya dealerships. There is also flooding at Moroka Nancefield Road and Mcube Drive in Dube, and Allandale Road in Midrand.”

Fihla advised motorists to avoid flooded roads and low-lying bridges.

“We have officers on high alert and will be monitoring the problematic areas and also the M1 at the double-decker section. We know that when it rains heavily it usually floods in that area.”

Mabaso said Tshwane EMS is prepared to deal with any incident that might arise.

“Our flood incident management plan is being rolled out, in particular in Centurion. We are actively involved in all other areas, the seven regions of the city. Tshwane emergency personnel are on standby and we encourage residents to report any life-threatening emergency to our toll-free number, 107, so that there is a prompt response,” he said.

Saws forecaster Celeste Fourie said: “The weather system will move ... towards the central parts of the country by Sunday, when we can expect more rainfall to shift from the central to eastern parts of the country.”

TimesLIVE


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