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Damages In The Greater Oudtshoorn During And After Predicted Rains

Oudtshoorn, 08 March 2023 – On Friday, 03 March 2023, Oudtshoorn Municipality received a weather warning from the Fire, Rescue and Disaster Management of the Municipality indicating that torrential rain will hit the Greater Oudtshoorn on Saturday 04 March 2023, and Sunday, 05 March 2023.  To ensure effective coordination of the response team’s efforts to address floods, fallen trees, electrical cable faults, and informal settlement issues, a request was sent through by Disaster Management that all councillors and departments have personnel on standby for the predicted rain over the weekend.


A 132kv-11kv transformer at Eskom tripped on Sunday morning, 05 March 2023, and it took about 10 hours to repair. The municipality provided the town with electricity on the 22kv system, however, there was only a limited amount of power available.  The community was urged to please use power sparingly. Since the heavy rain and strong wind which occurred on Sunday, the control room received more than 100 reports of households and areas without electricity. Four electricians worked around the clock to attend to all reports and by 13:00 on Monday, 06 March 2023, there were only 18 faults which still had to be addressed.


The Huis River, the main source of water for De rust and Blomnek, is flowing strongly and the water is murky. De Rust does not have a treatment plant and the water is only disinfected by chlorination.

The increase in murkiness does not pose any direct danger but does influence the effectiveness of the chlorination. We request that residents of Blomnek and De Rust boil water before drinking until the water quality returns to normal.


The Vehicle Testing Station at the Oudtshoorn Traffic Department is currently also closed until further notice due to the heavy rainstorm recently that caused water damage to the equipment.

We will keep the public updated.


Meiringspoort was closed from Sunday afternoon until Monday afternoon but is now open for traffic. The occupants of vehicles that were trapped in Meiringspoort were rescued, there was no loss of lives and everybody is safe.  The municipality wants to bring it to the attention of all drivers to please make sure that when they are in Meiringspoort and it starts raining heavily to please drive through immediately and do not stop for the scenery or the waterfall to ensure not get trapped.  The low-water bridges in Meiringspoort tend to overflow very fast and make it difficult or impossible to drive through.


All the low bridges at the Grobelaarsriver in Oudtshoorn were overflowing which led to many roads in and around the Greater Oudtshoorn being flooded and closed to traffic. Rocks have fallen onto the road surface a few kilometres outside Oudtshoorn on the way to George.


The rainfall in certain parts of Oudtshoorn measured more than 50mm on Monday morning, however, at the same time only 20mm of rainfall was measured at Raubenheimerdam.

The Raubenheimerdam dam increased from 69.7% to 75.15% when it was measured on Monday, 8 March 2023.


Approximately 183 gumplus (waterproof plastic sheets) were distributed between Sunday and Monday.  A lot of roof damages were reported in the Blackjoint, Kanaal- and GG Camp areas as well as Volmoed, Kliplokasie and Bongolethu.

The Executive Mayor, Alderman Chris Macpherson, visited some areas on Sunday, 05 March 2023, during and after the heavy rains to assess the damages incurred.

Mayor Macpherson thanks all residents of the Greater Oudtshoorn for their patience regarding the reporting of electrical problems and house damages. The Mayor also wants to thank the dedicated staff who work hard to repair faults.