Flooding: Roofs Blown Off Overnight Across Cape Town

The storm that pounded Cape Town on Wednesday evening produced pandemonium across the metropole. City services have been besieged with calls of weather-related incidents.

Sonica Lategan, the City of Cape Town’s Disaster Risk Management spokesman, stated that in addition to flooded and obstructed streets, there have been reports of flooding in several residential areas, as well as power outages.

“The Disaster Management Centre can confirm that the City’s Fire & Rescue Service received an emergency call at approximately 11.20pm last night, reporting roofs blown off in Wynberg and damage to overhead electrical wires,” Lategan stated.

“Crews from Constantia rushed to the event and discovered four houses damaged at the crossroads of Sussex and Bute Roads. “The occupants of the properties moved to alternative accommodations,” she stated.

“Fire Services personnel remained on the scene until the wind slowed down at around 4.30 a.m. to ensure there was no further impact. The Disaster Risk Management Centre will conduct further investigations and evaluations this morning.

Between 6 p.m. Wednesday and 6 a.m. Thursday, the Public Emergency Communication Centre recorded 339 events. Just over 40% of all calls were about the potential effects of the severe weather.

During the period, 54 complaints were received about home flooding and extreme weather conditions, as well as 85 calls about road conditions, such as motor vehicle accidents and trees obstructing roadways. Approximately 10% of contacts were for service issues.

Maxine Bezuidenhout, spokesman for the City of Cape Town’s Traffic Services, stated that there was extensive flooding overnight and road closures.

By 8 a.m., the following roads were closed: AZ Berman Drive between Wespoort and Imperial Roads, the M5 southbound off-ramp onto Ottery Road, and Rockley and Lester Road in Wynberg due to flooding under the railway bridge.

Trees are hindering traffic on the R300 northbound before Hindle Road. The left lane is blocked. The left lane of the N7 northbound offramp at Bosmansdam Road is impeded, as are both lanes on Diemersdal and Phesantekraal Road in Durbanville.

“Reports of impacted roads will likely increase as the morning wears on. While we expect lower-than-usual traffic volumes on the roads motorists are urged to not let their guard down and to be incredibly cautious,” Bezuidenhout said.

“Drive slower than usual, drive with your headlights on at all times, maintain a safe following distance and report any incidents that you come across that could present a risk to public safety, as soon as it is safe to do so.”

The public is encouraged to report service requests using the City’s phone, text, and internet channels so that they can be queued for action by the appropriate departments.

Any life-threatening incidents should be notified to the Public Emergency Communications Centre at 021 480 7700.

The Western Cape Education Department closed most schools on Wednesday owing to a weather warning.

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