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Province may be impacted by Cyclone Eloise

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The Department of Water and Sanitation has warned of possible flooding along the Vaal and Orange rivers, as a result of Tropical Cyclone Eloise.

Tropical Cyclone Eloise. File image

The Department of Water and Sanitation has warned of possible flooding along the Vaal and Orange river, after Tropical Cyclone Eloise caused widespread damage in Mozambique.

Since its landfall in parts of Limpopo and Mpumalanga on January 24, the cyclone is expected to bring heavy rainfall to parts of the eastern highveld and northern parts of KwaZulu Natal on Monday.

The department has upgraded the cyclone to category 2 storm with a flood warning on Monday and indicated that teams were on standby should sluice gates be opened to release water and reduce pressure on infrastructure.

The department cautioned that it was important for everyone to remain vigilant.

“Both the Gariep Dam is the biggest dam in the country and the Vanderkloof is the second biggest dam, are full and are overflowing. Bloemhof dam is also at full capacity. The high inflows into the country’s biggest dams has meant that the possibility of flooding in those areas remains.

“The prediction of rainfall is unreliable. Therefore, the release of water from these dams is not top of mind at the moment. It is critically important for all those who would be affected by such floods to already begin moving away from the floodlines,” the department said.

The Provincial traffic department is meanwhile monitoring cracks in the road between Danielskuil and Kuruman and other roads affected by rains in the district.

Concern was raised after a sinkhole was reported to have developed as a result of the heavy rains.

It was, however, reported that the sinkhole has not expanded since it was spotted in the first week in January.

The John Taolo Gaetsewe District Department of Co-operative Governance, Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs is assessing the impact of floods in the Ga Segonyana and Joe Morolong local municipalities following heavy rains over the past three weeks.

A report will be presented to the Coghsta MEC so that provincial government can formulate a coordinated relief program with local municipalities to provide relief to affected communities.

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