Two children dead due to heavy rain in KZN

Two children dead due to heavy rain in KZN

Two children have been reported dead in Durban following heavy rain and flash floods in the coastal areas of KwaZulu-Natal over the past 48 hours.

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“A one-year-old toddler was killed when a wall collapsed at an informal settlement in D Section, uMlazi, and another five-year-old child lost his life in Rafia Road, Chatsworth. A four-year-old was injured in Johanna Road, Sea Cow Lake,” eThekwini municipal spokesperson Thulani Mbatha said on Sunday.

Several areas in the eThekwini metro have been hit by heavy flooding following torrential rain in the last 48 hours. The South African Weather Services reported 126mm of rainfall in the Durban south and central areas and 92.8mm in Virginia between 8pm on Saturday and 8am on Sunday.

Affected areas include Isipingo, Umlazi, Chatsworth, Reservoir Hills, and Sea Cow Lake, where homes and roads have been damaged.

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Mbatha said the city’s emergency unit had been inundated with reports and had responded to a number of calls from residents needing assistance.

“eThekwini emergency services had received 76 calls by 2pm on Sunday and the fire department has responded to all the reports,” said Mbatha.

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Mayor James Nxumalo extended condolences to the families that lost their loved ones due to the floods. He urged residents to report incidents resulting from the floods to the city’s emergency number.

“We have dispatched teams to most areas that have been affected by the heavy rain. Our disaster management centre has also been activated to intervene in wards where people have been left destitute due to damage to their homes.

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“We are very grateful for the rain in this time of drought and encourage people to harvest as much rainwater as possible for use later. It is important, however, that we stay alert, especially motorists that are using heavily flooded roads,” Nxumalo said.

A number of families in informal settlements in Umlazi and a transit camp in Isipingo have had to evacuate as a nearby river burst its banks. Other areas affected by the floods are Marianhill and Dassenhoek near Pinetown, and Bonella. Emergency teams are on the ground assessing the situation to determine assistance required.

Reports can be made to the emergency services number 031-361-000.

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