Closed valve possibly extended massive Joburg water outage

Closed valve possibly extended massive Joburg water outage

Breakfast with Martin Bester spoke to DA ward councillor Nicole van Dyk for Ward 99 about the dire water situation some Johannesburg residents have been facing.

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Nicole Van Dyk, who is also the DA's shadow MMC for water and power, told Martin Bester that the situation initially started due to a power outage after lightning struck the Eikenhof pump station in the South of Johannesburg.

The Eikenhof pump station is the main water feeder from Rand Water to Johannesburg Water systems.

According to the ward councillor, the power went out for almost four days, and no contingency plans were set in place to ensure the water supply wasn't affected.

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"If you see a power outage in the city and you don’t know when the problem will be resolved, water should be monitored carefully to ensure supply doesn't run dry."

During a meeting with Joburg mayor Kabelo Gwamanda about the water supply on Tuesday evening, vague answers were given about the situation, and Gwamanda said that they would try and do better in the future.

New reports claim that the situation was exacerbated due to a massive valve that was closed.

"We don't know this for sure yet, but putting two-and-two together seems likely. If this is true, it is very worrisome."

Van Dyk said that if the lack of water was due to a closed valve, it only represented the lack of leadership that sits with the provincial government and Rand Water.

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There are already massive issues with maintenance, as pipes that supply water should be maintained more frequently.

"It frustrates me when the government blames residents for water use. We live in a hot climate and use water, so it should not be a surprise."

"We see burst pipes everywhere in the city, and that’s why it is frustrating when residents are blamed."

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