The KZN Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) as directed by KZN Premier Willies Mchunu, is coordinating relief efforts amid the worst storm to hit many parts of KZN. The storm has so far caused major damage on hospitals, factories, homes and other key infrastructure. It has caused power outages and 2 deaths reported at this stage. Many residential areas, businesses especially in Ethekwini Metro are reporting flash flooding.
Other major incidents have been reported in Nquthu Local Municipality, in ward 8 of Mbewunye where an 8 years old girl was struck by lightning and in ward 2, KwaMngxangala area, where a 46 years old male drowned while trying to cross an overflowing river. Ugu has reported that Mbango bridge under Ray Nkonyeni LM & Umzinto bridge in Mdoni are flooding.
The traffic authorities are closely monitoring the situation. Most of eThekwini areas are affected by strong winds with heavy downpours resulting in the falling of trees & some housing infrastructure in area areas of umlazi, amanzimtoti, Montclair.
The Acting MEC for Cogta, Weziwe Thusi, has activated and dispatched all disaster management teams to respond to the situation on the ground. Currently teams are providing emergency relief led by Mayors, Councilors, Amakhosi, Izinduna, ward councilors and community development workers.
MEC Thusi has also activated Joint Operations Centers in all affected municipalities which are coordinating relief and rapid response efforts.
“We are urging residents in all parts of the province to exercise extra caution as the heavy rain and gale-force winds will be in the province for the rest of today” said MEC Weziwe Thusi..
We warn those living next to river banks and low-lying areas as localised flooding is expected along the coast and in many parts of the South Coast and eThekwini metro,” said Thusi.
All reported weather-related incidents will be attended to and residents are urged to contact their councillors.
“We are also urging motorists to avoid all but necessary travel as some roads such as the N2 freeway has been closed in both directions at Amanzimtoti due to severe flooding caused by a massive storm that hit this area this morning. Motorists are requested to tune into weather reports as they plan their journeys,” said Thusi.
The department is also warning that the extreme levels of rainfall experienced today will be followed by a cold front which is expected to reach KZN by the weekend. Disaster management teams will continue to provide emergency assistance as long as necessary.
Communities can contact the following numbers of disaster management in their respective municipalities:
For urgent assistance communities can contact the following disaster personnel
Provincial Disaster Center: 0800 005133
Ethekwini: 0834615073 ( Mr V Ngubane)
Ugu: (0823324000) Mr Makhosi Mgobhozi
uMgungundlovu: 0828860747 ( Lindiwe Serero)
Uthukela: 0763318177 (Bongi Hlomuka)
uMzinyathi: 0828422859 (Mzwandile Hadebe)
Amajuba: 0836041904 (OT Hadebe)
Zululand: 0828132925 (Sipho Dlamini)
uMkhanyakude: 0769253252 (Sfiso Ngema)
King Cetshwayo: 0726252983 (Thabo Mlambo)
Ilembe : 071 879 7155 (Sfiso Gqubula)
Harry Gwala: 0828057892 (Thandi Dzanibe)
For more information contact: KZN Cogta spokespersons Lennox Mabaso, 082 884 2403; or Msawakhe Mayisela, 060 966 4220