On Tuesday, 10 October, Durban was hit by heavy rains and high wind speeds during a storm that wreaked havoc on the roads, caused severe damage to buildings, flooding and several port emergencies.

Residents in many areas are now accessing the damage caused, with many fighting to survive after their homes, especially in the southern areas were submerged in flood waters, leaving many destitute and in desperate need of assistance.

The roads saw several accidents and eThekweni municipality issued a warning to residents to stay inside. EThekwini Municipality Head of Communications Unit, Tozi Mthethwa said that several roads were closed.
“Several roads, including M4 Southbound, Margaret Mncadi (onramp onto M4 south) have been closed. Motorists are urged not to drive into flooded areas and those whose vehicles have been stuck in localised flooding are urged to remain calm and get out of the vehicle. Response teams have been activated to assist where required,” said Mthethwa.

The port suspended vessel movements, said Ayanda Mantshongo, the Executive Manager (Corporate Affairs) for Transnet National Ports Authority.
“Transnet’s marine services team and tugboats are assisting with several emergencies. These include the grounding of three vessels in the Port of Durban. Other vessels have broken mooring lines and are drifting in the channel,” said Mantshongo.

Cars were up to their side mirrors in water near the old airport and almost submerged in La Lucia near Armstrong Road and a taxi got stuck on the side of the N2 near Galleria were the roads were closed due to flooding. Passengers were assisted out of the vehicle by Recuse Care paramedics.

“The taxi was stuck in a ditch, leaning to the side, paramedics assisted three people out of the vehicle who were scared to get out, they were afraid they would drown,” said Gareth Jamieson of Rescue Care Paramedics. Six people were injured on the N3 near Richmond Road when a vehicle and truck were involved in a collision.

Several Durban hospitals including King Edward Hospital, Addington, Wentworth, King Dinzulu and Prince Mshiyeni Memorial hospital were also damaged by the storm.

Citizens are urged to offer whatever assistance they can to those affected by the storms. They can contact their locals councillors and disaster management units in their areas.

Emergency contact numbers:
Sea Rescue: 031 361 8567
Metro Ambulance: 10177
ER24 Ambulance: 084 124
Electricity Faults: 081 131 3111
Vehicle Break down (AA):
083 843 22
Provincial Disaster Centre:
0800 005 133
Ethekwini:  083 461 5073
Mr V Ngubane)