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Sinkholes, shacks damaged, as floods sweep through Gauteng

By News24 23 March 2018

Johannesburg – Informal settlements have been flooded, shacks have been damaged and sinkholes, large enough to swallow a car, have been discovered across Gauteng after heavy rains on Thursday.

Informal settlements in Tshwane, Soshanguve, Mamelodi and Ga-Rankuwa have been affected by floods.

Tshwane emergency services spokesperson Johan Pieterse said emergency services personnel were on their way to these areas.

“We will make a decision [on] whether to evacuate the residents to halls, after we have assessed the areas. It has not been confirmed yet.”

Pieterse said all low water bridges in Centurion and roads in Tshwane have been flooded.

“There are a lot of uprooted trees and our firefighters are busy trying to get those trees away from the road as quickly as possible,” he said.

Pieterse added that a sinkhole was reported on the R55, near the Laudium dumping site.

“Apparently there was a car stuck in the sinkhole last night, but it was pulled out by recovery services.”

Most of the suburbs in Tshwane’s Region 3 have also been gripped by power outages.

No injuries were reported.

Johannesburg Metro Police spokesperson Wayne Minnaar said three lanes on the M1 North were closed after a tree fell on the highway, and two homes were flooded in Klipspruit.

A pedestrian was also injured after being run over on Main Reef Road.

“Motorists are advised to drive carefully and abandon vehicles if they get stuck in the floods,” Minnaar said.

Flooding was also reported on Leeuwkop and Rivonia roads.

Ekurhuleni Metro Police spokesperson Kobeli Mokheseng said the roads in Katlehong, Kempton Park, Benoni, Germiston, Boksburg and Springs have been affected.

All roads around Lakeside Mall in Benoni have been closed.

Mokheseng said hotspot areas in Bedfordview and the N3 at Gillooly’s interchange were not heavily affected and that traffic was flowing freely.

Ekurhuleni Disaster and Emergency Management Services spokesperson William Ntladi said a wall had collapsed in Katlehong, while a sinkhole was discovered in the Makause informal settlement.

“There is a separation of ground, so anything can happen. We have invited the Department of Mineral Resources to do an investigation.” DM

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