Heavy rains cut off some Northern Cape villages

Heavy rains cut off some Northern Cape villages

Heavy rains have wreaked havoc in parts of the Northern Cape.

Premier Dr Zamani Saul says the John Taolo Gaetsewe District is the worst affected.

In a tweet, the premier says some villages in the area are completely cutoff.

“We are on the ground distributing food parcels to these affected areas with the help of SANDF. We are busy finalising our plans to restore the damaged roads,” he concludes.

The Northern Cape is one of several provinces in the country that have been pounded by persistent rains.

In Mpumalanga, more than eight people drowned in overflowing rivers, dams and streams.

Mbombela and Nkomazi have been severely affected with houses and road infrastructure badly damaged.

Members of communities in northern KwaZulu-Natal have also lost homes to the heavy rains.

Heavy rains kill three people in Mpumalanga

Heavy rains kill three people in Mpumalanga

Heavy rains in Mpumalanga have claimed three lives.

Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs MEC, Mandla Msibi, has revealed this in a statement.

He says a 5-year-old boy was swept away by a stream of water at Masoyi in Mbombela; a 40-year-old man drowned in a local river in Pilgrims’ Rest while a baby fell into a river at Elukwatini while her mother was crossing.

“The fatalities have left us grief-stricken. Our heartfelt condolences to the bereaved families,” says Msibi.

The MEC is urging the public not to risk their lives by crossing local rivers and dams as they are currently overflowing.

The heavy rains were a result of Cyclone Eloise, which also battered parts of Limpopo and KwaZulu-Natal.

Cyclone Eloise claims 5-year-old boy’s life in Mpumalanga

Cyclone Eloise claims 5-year-old boy’s life in Mpumalanga

A five-year-old boy has reportedly died after he was swept away while his mother tried to cross a river in Masoyi, Mpumalanga.

It is believed that a woman was carrying her young child while trying to cross a river on Saturday afternoon when the incident occurred.

The woman allegedly lost her footing while crossing the river and lost her child in the current.

Mpumalanga SAPS Diving Unit recovered the child’s body at around 17:00 on Sunday.

The storm has also lashed parts of Limpopo and KwaZulu-Natal. – Report from the Lowvelder

Public urged to remain vigilant as cyclone Eloise approaches

Public urged to remain vigilant as cyclone Eloise approaches

Limpopo, KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga residents are bracing themselves for Tropical Storm Eloise, which is expected to hit the local shores on Sunday.

Heavy rains and floods are expected to lash the Mopani and Vhembe districts, among other parts of the country.

The two municipalities say they are prepared for any disaster that may occur and are working closely with the national disaster management team.  

Mopani District Spokesperson, Odas Ngobeni, says they have roped in the health, and environmental health practitioners to make sure that the municipality observes lockdown regulations such as social distancing, in cases where individuals may be required to be evacuated to community halls. 

The Vhembe District Municipality Spokesperson, Matodzi Ralushai, is urging community members to remain vigilant at all times.

In KwaZulu-Natal, meteorologist Mkhushulwa Msimango says the cyclone could wreak havoc in parts of the province.

Msimango is also warning people to be extra careful on Sunday and Monday.

Meanwhile, power utility, Eskom, says it has made contingency plans to mitigate any risks and the possible impact on  infrastructure and the provision of electricity.

Mpumalanga, where most of the power utility’s power stations are situated, is one of the areas expected to be hard hit by the storm. Eskom Spokesperson, Sikonathi Mantshantsha, says the power stations will implement wet coal contingency plans should the need arise.

“Typically, heavy rainfall for four or less days does not pose a significant threat to power station operations, but continuous heavy rainfall for more than four days does hamper coal handling at the power stations and the mines supplying them. There are some power stations in the Mpumalanga area that have been experiencing ash dam constraints. Continuous heavy rainfall over these power stations could hamper operations and recovery efforts already under way,” says Mantshantsha.

Disaster management authorities in Mpumalanga are also on high alert.

The cyclone is currently lashing parts of Mozambique. – Additional reporting by Maputuland FM News Editor, Philani Zulu.