n IMIESA - Flood control and countermeasures - president’s message

Volume 44 Number 5
  • ISSN : 0257-1978


During the recent spate of heavy rainfall across South Africa, many of our innercity roads were flooded as stormwater systems failed to cope with the deluge. In some cases, culverts and stormwater channels didn’t function optimally, either because they were blocked or simply overwhelmed in terms of their design capacity. The broader KwaZulu-Natal region experienced particularly heavy rains and winds. Although Sanral reported that there was no structural damage on national provincial routes, some sections of the N2 and N3 were blocked due to landslides and flooding. We also saw a spate of structural failures in buildings. A tragic example is the Pentecostal Church in Dlangubo, where a wall collapsed, killing a number of congregants. The cause has yet to be determined, but this reinforces the point that any structure, whether it’s a road, bridge or building, needs to be designed to withstand known, historic and projected storm conditions. Structures must be founded to specification and the correct drainage system installed to prevent undermining. In all instances, regular inspections must be part of the process.

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