Ekurhuleni has started to open some of the roads that were flooded by the heavy rains experienced last night.
Already traffic is flowing in parts of the Trichardt Road underpass in Boksburg, and Masakhane Road in Katlehong was opened at 16h15 today. Water has already subsided for the 13 households flooded in Emanzini Informal Settlement.
Yesterday DEMS responded to three shacks that were flooded in Emandleni informal settlement near Benoni by digging a trench to divert the water.The families have been moved away from the flood line and their homes rebuilt. A tree that fell on and destroyed eight shacks in Angelo was cut and removed and assistance in rebuilding the homes in under way.
Six households were affected by a sinkhole in Makausi Informal Settlement and assistance offered to the families. In Daveyton and Thinasonke the City aided families whose shacks were destroyed. In addition 30 families fell victim to the flooding in Cross Roads Informal Settlement and assistance provided. KwaThema Stadium is still flooded, but the City is on site to drain the water.
Repairs to the power outage in Kempton Park are ongoing after the substation was flooded. Technicians are experiencing difficulty in accessing the high voltage overhead lines because of the unstable ground as a result of water saturation.
Residents, however, are warned to remain cautious as more rain is forecast over the weekend.
Water in the stormwater systems drains into dams, streams and lakes in the City. These have overflowed due to the heavy and consistent rain experienced in the last few days.
"It has been raining on and off in Ekurhuleni since Tuesday but yesterday we experienced nearly 12 hours of non-stop steady rain. This has filled up the streams and lakes in the City where the stormwater drains into. With time the water will subside and more roads will be opened," says City spokesperson Themba Gadebe.
In preparation for the rainy season, the Ekurhuleni Roads and Stormwater Department cleaned over 11 000 stormwater pipes in the City. The department in the last financial year purchased Jet Rodders - big pressurised water trucks that pump water at high speed to clean the system of debris and blockages. These trucks clean kilometres of drainage system in a day.
Ekurhuleni has raised standards for new developments by requiring the installation of 600mm pipes instead of 450mm. The City also requires that for every hectare of development there should be a 300 cubic metre attenuation point. This allows for 300 000 litres of water to be stored at a time, and then slowly released to reduce flooding of streams and lakes.
The City is actively upgrading township stormwater systems where there has been a historic poor planning of these settlements. During road construction additional stormwater systems are also installed.
Roads still closed include Daveyton bridge, R51 Kingsway Road, and Tom Jones in Benoni where traffic is being redirected.