Provincial authorities in eastern South Africa have evacuated more than 300 people from their homes as renewed heavy rains caused flooding and mudslides in the KwaZulu-Natal province, weeks after severe flooding killed hundreds of people and displaced thousands.
“We understand that some areas are inaccessible and have become islands at this stage,” the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Government said in its latest update statement of the storm.
According to the statement, the province has 82 evacuation centers ready to accommodate evacuees from the most affected areas.
Provincial authorities and emergency personnel reported that the new rains had damaged roads, homes, and electricity infrastructure in the northern parts of the province since last Friday, which has remained on high alert with warnings of further downpours in some areas.
“We are yet to receive a full comprehensive report on the impact of these latest heavy rains, but as reports come in, a worrying picture is emerging,” Kwazulu-Natal provincial minister for local government Sipho Hlomuka said.
Hlomuka added that the local government appealed for assistance from South Africa’s national government and also called for the deployment of the South African National Defense Force to assist with disaster management.
According to reports, the floods that engulfed KwaZulu-Natal last month caused an estimated US$1.5 billion in damage to property, killed more than 400 people, and displaced more than 40,000 others.
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