Wave of dis­re­pair

Con­cern as BCM drags feet to fix dam­age

Go! & Express - - Front Page - QHAMANI LINGANI

IT HAS been al­most a month since the mon­strous waves hit the shores of East Lon­don beaches but the pedes­trian pave­ments are still dam­aged and not cor­doned off – an ob­vi­ous dan­ger to the public. There is also still lots of sea sand on the road and the con­crete refuse bins that were washed away, have not been col­lected from where it ended up.

Buf­falo City Metro (BCM) spokesman Samkelo Ng­wenya said the in­sur­ance as­ses­sor has been on site. This in­cluded the struc­tural en­gi­neer to as­sess the dam­ages, as well as to check what has been in­sured and what the mu­nic­i­pal­ity has to do on its own to re­pair the dam­ages.

The day af­ter the wave dis­as­ter, the Es­planade was closed off to traf­fic as BCM work­ers cleaned up sand and de­bris, load­ing smashed ce­ment bins, bricks and piles of wood onto dump trucks.

How­ever, upon a visit last week, there was still sand on the side­walks in the area be­tween Su­gar­shack Back­pack­ers and Glen Eden.

“With re­gards to the sand, the metro is deal­ing with it on a daily ba­sis. Roads were closed fol­low­ing the mas­sive waves and a lot of de­bris was re­moved,” Ng­wenya said.

The bro­ken pave­ment with its huge, deep holes was not cor­doned off or have any sign warn­ing peo­ple of the pos­si­ble dan­ger it posed.

By­passer Xolani Mzuku said he is dis­ap­pointed that the BCM has not even tried to fix the con­crete side­walks as they are a dan­ger, es­pe­cially to chil­dren.

“How long are they going to leave it like this? We are ap­proach­ing the sum­mer sea­son and the kids would want to run around and play by the beach.

“This should have been fixed a long time ago, but I am not sur­prised at all. All the BCM cares about is chang­ing street names in­stead of fix­ing what is bro­ken,” Mzuku said.

Neil Smith, who started the Fix our Bro­ken City page on Face­book, said: “We un­der­stand this kind of dam­age takes a while to re­pair but could it not be cor­doned off to stop peo­ple from fall­ing into the holes?”

Ng­wenya said the mag­ni­tude of the tide caused se­vere dam­age which will take a bit longer to re­pair.

“There are is­sues of ero­sion and re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion, and those will need an En­vi­ron­men­tal Im­pact Assess­ment Study.”


DAN­GER ZONE: The huge waves that hit the East Lon­don and sur­rounds coast­line al­most a month ago, caused mas­sive dam­age to in­fra­struc­ture. The pave­ment of the East Lon­don beach­front was es­pe­cially hit hard with huge holes in it and bro­ken-down walls

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