Chaos as flooding overwhelms parts of Gauteng

A sinkhole in Valhalla, on the road leading to and from the R55.
Picture: Twitter/Rob Beezy

A sinkhole in Valhalla, on the road leading to and from the R55. Picture: Twitter/Rob Beezy

A list of dangerous bridges has been released by the Johannesburg Roads Agency while graves have reportedly collapsed at a cemetery.

While Johannesburg and Pretoria continue to count the cost of flood damage following extensive rains, it has been reported that graves and headstones at a new cemetery in Olifantsvlei have collapsed.

Power outages continue to be reported throughout both cities.

The Johannesburg Roads Agency (JRA) has asked road users to be careful following heavy rains, particularly when crossing bridges.

A list of bridges has been released that were determined to be affected.

• Buccluech Street Bridge is currently closed to traffic.
• Buccluech Avenue Bridge.
• Dorothy Nyembe pedestrian Bridge has collapsed in Region D (Soweto Dobsonville). The Bridge had been closed.
• 12th Avenue Bridge.
• Canterbury Bridge baldly affected. The bridge will be closed on Friday.
• Belgrave Bridge is currently overtopping and the bridge is closed.
• Nancefield Street Bridge in Soweto is currently flooding.
• Mzilikazi Street Bridge is currently flooding in Soweto.
• Canning Street Bridge in Bramley is badly affected.
• Third Avenue in Region A, Chartwell Bridge is badly affected and is flooding.
• 118 Morkel Road Bridge in Lynhurst is badly affected.
• Medler Street Bridge in Region C is badly affected.
• Seder Street Bridge in Region C is badly affected.
• Simmert Street Bridge, 2 Witkoppen Bridges (provincial authorities have closed the bridges).
• Platina Street Bridge is badly affected.
• Pedestrian Bridge connecting 9th St and 10th St, Parkhurst is badly affected.
• Robert Broom culvert (close to Robert broom/ Amaryllis int).
• Martinus Smuts Avenue Bridge in Soweto is badly affected.
• Kilpsruit Low level Bridge in Kliptown. The bridge is flooding.

The JRA said the bridges had been earmarked for upgrades and would be cordoned off if they posed a risk during flooding. More bridges are likely to be named.

Several trees have fallen over and all the low-water bridges have been closed in Centurion, Pretoria and surrounding areas.

The Gauteng Weather Service warned motorists of extensive flooding in Centurion after the Hennops and Appies rivers broke their banks due to the heavy rain.

The Citizen was sent the following striking drone footage of the flooding.

Motorists have also been cautioned to avoid the R55 leading to Valhalla after a car drove into a sinkhole (pictured). The driver escaped unharmed.

Residents have been asked to avoid all streams and low-lying areas when flooded and were warned not to attempt hazardous crossings.

Houses are flooded and many people report that their roofs are leaking. It was reported that a homeless woman needed to be rescued by emergency workers in flooded Soweto.

Tshwane emergency services spokesperson Johan Pieterse said two cars were stuck in Hammanskraal, north of Pretoria, and emergency services had to pull them out.

“Several trees have already fallen over all over Pretoria and we expect more to fall because the ground is very wet,” Pieterse said.

He told The Citizen that emergency services were on standby all over the city and that low-water bridges will only be open when it is safe and to relieve the traffic flow.

He said there had been no injuries or deaths reported thus far and he asked people to take extra care.

Pieterse also warned motorists of potholes and said there was a major pothole on the R55 at the back of Atteridgeville in the west of Pretoria.

Livian Harris said her grandmother’s house was completely flooded and they were trying to sweep the water out of the house, but it did not help.

Watch the video below:

“All the rooms are flooded and we do not what to do,” she said helplessly.

today in print