Freak storm wreaks havoc, several dead

eThekwini mayor, Zandile Gumede, together with a delegation which included Human Settlements MEC, Ravi Pillay, Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) MEC, Weziwe Thusi, and Health MEC, Sbongiseni Dhlomo visited King Edward Hospital to assess damage done by the storm.

The ferocious storm and floods which hit Durban on Tuesday have left several dead, a number of others injured, thousands displaced and properties severely damaged.

To assess the aftermath of the storm damage, eThekwini mayor, Zandile Gumede, together with a delegation which included Human Settlements MEC Ravi Pillay, Education and Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs MEC, Weziwe Thusi, and Health MEC, Sbongiseni Dhlomo, visited areas in the city which were badly affected on Wednesday.

ALSO READ: WATCH: Drone footage captures damage following massive waves in Durban

A press-statement released by the Provincial Executive team stated that the Provincial Government of KZN, together with the eThekwini Metro and other affected municipalities, is currently mounting a spirited response as part of efforts to alleviate the impact of these violent storms and to bring the lives of people affected back to normalcy.

Most schools were also disrupted by Tuesday’s storms and pupils had to be sent home early. A total of 42 schools, nine of which are high schools, were gravely affected and the breakdown per Education Department District. The department has raised concerns about the upcoming matric examinations in these schools. Plans are underway to ensure that pupils from all affected schools will be able to sit their exams as per the set schedule.

The torrents of rain also caused enormous damage to health-care institutions largely in the eThekwini District. Hospitals such as King Edward, RK Khan, Inkosi Albert Luthuli Central, Clairwood Hospital, and Prince Mshiyeni Memorial Hospital were damaged due to the storm.

MEC Thusi said, “At this stage, we have a total of eight deaths reported that have been confirmed and verified. There are, however, reports of missing persons and further casualties cannot be ruled out at this stage.The extent of damage to infrastructure includes flooded and blocked roads, 19 collapsed buildings and perimeter walls, blocked storm water drains and sewer lines, flooded buildings and households and power outages as a result of electric cable damage. The focus remains on the recovery and the provision of relief efforts while assessments of damages are underway. We will only know the figures when these assessments have been completed. Damages are, however, estimated to run into millions of rands,” she said.

ALSO READ: VIDEO: Brave marine pilot steers ship safely during rough weather conditions

MEC Thusi also pointed out how social media was being utilised for the wrong reasons to disseminate and distribute hoax information. “We strongly condemn such practices as they cause unnecessary panic. Members of the public are therefore urged to desist from distributing unverified information,” she said. KZN Premier Willies Mchunu will be meeting with the bereaved families in Durban on Thursday.

Visit our sister sites for more news in the respective areas: 

  AUTHOR
Zola Phoswa
Journalist

Latest News

COMMENTS

Top
Next Story x
Show your support for the 16 Days of Activism campaign