Level 8 Warning: Disruptive Rain Alert For Greater Cape Town – SA Weather Service

Picture: Leon Lestrade/Independent Newspapers

Western Cape officials met on Tuesday to discuss the controlled release of water from the Wemmershoek Dam into the Berg River as a proactive and preventive action to absorb part of the anticipated inflow from Thursday’s rain, lowering the risk of flooding downstream.

Local Government MEC Anton Bredell took note of the South African Weather Service’s Level 8 warning for disruptive rain on Thursday across Cape Town, Drakenstein, and Stellenbosch.

Rainfall accumulations are forecast to range from 40 to 60 mm, with hilly locations receiving 80 to 100 mm.

“We take note of this warning, which is rated as a low probability, but with potentially severe consequences should it materialise. We are concerned about the possibility of flooding, mudslides and rockfalls, and as such urge people to remain safe avoid unnecessary travel and keep informed through reputable news outlets,” Bredell said.

According to the Department of Water and Sanitation, dam levels across the province are rising. At 05:00 Tuesday morning, the unverified levels were reported: Theewaterskloof Dam at 71%, Berg River Dam at 97%, Clan William Dam at 94%, and Wemmershoek Dam at 83%.

Bredell stated that the Department of Local Government, Department of Water and Sanitation, and City of Cape Town met on Tuesday to discuss the controlled release of 50m³/second water from the Wemmershoek Dam into the Berg River as a proactive and precautionary measure, beginning Tuesday afternoon and ending Friday morning.

“This controlled release will create a buffer to absorb some of the expected inflow from Thursday’s rain, reducing the risk of flooding downstream.”

Large parts of the province again received significant amounts of rain on Tuesday, and humanitarian efforts to provide shelter, food and blankets continues throughout the province, Bredell said.

“We will together with our private sector partners distribute close to 9 000 hot meals and more than 1 000 blankets to people in need today.”

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