Home News “Trapped” city residents fear for their health

“Trapped” city residents fear for their health


Flood-hit residents say they have been “trapped” inside their houses for the past five days

Pictures: Supplied

RESIDENTS are concerned about the health hazard posed by sewage, dead rats and snakes that are floating in the water in the flooded yards of their homes in White City, Roodepan.

Following recent rains, the community members said on Monday that they have been “trapped” inside their flooded houses for the past five days.

A resident in Von Webber Street, Christelle Brandt, said that she rarely left her home as the water outside her house is nearly too deep to wade through.

“The water is not subsiding and the drains are blocked. My child is sick and I had to carry him on my back and walk through the water to take him to crèche. The water is full of algae and is turning green,” said Brandt.

She added that dead animals, including rats and snakes, were washed into her yard from the surrounding veld.

“We had to get rid of the vermin to prevent the spread of diseases. This is a health hazard. I called the councillor and the municipality. They are aware of the problem but no one can tell us what can be done.”

Brandt said that while a number of her neighbours were evacuating their homes and relocating their valuables, she had nowhere else to go.

“I have four children – aged three, nine, 16 and 22 years old – and I do not know anyone who will be able to accommodate us. So we are stuck here.”

Another resident, Claudine Bartlett, added that used condoms, toilet paper and sewage was spilling into her yard from the blocked drains.

“The water smells foul. The water seeped into my house and damaged my furniture and cupboards,” said Bartlett.

She said that she has had to keep her eight-year-old son out of school since Tuesday last week.

“I couldn’t leave the house to get food. We wrap plastic shopping bags around our feet in an attempt to keep dry.”

Bartlett believed that covering the water with sand would not help as the water is too deep.

The local ward councillor, Mienie Visagie, said she was aware of the “disaster” and promised to respond to media enquiries on Tuesday.

Sol Plaatje Municipality has not yet responded to media enquiries.

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