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THE homes of more than 25 000 people in the city have been flooded by the heavy rains, according to a Disaster Risk Management spokesman.
Parts of Philippi, Gugulethu and Hout Bay have been among the worst affected.
In Sweet Home Farm, in Philippi, a shovelled pathway of mud leads to the shack that Mitchell Weavers, 40, has shared with his partner for seven years.
It is among 200 shacks in Sweet Home Farm and one of 9 056 across Cape Town that have been flooded.
Weavers is trying to dry his clothes.
“I woke up to go to work, but when I got out of bed, the water was over my ankles,” he said.
“The whole place was covered in water, my door couldn’t even open.”
Weavers said he had used a spade to remove most of the water and to create a channel so the water could drain away from his shack.
“When we know it’s going to rain a lot then my girlfriend and I cover ourselves with a plastic sail so we don’t get wet because our roof is broken.
“I have to make a fire to cook because my paraffin stove is so wet I can’t do anything with it now. All our clothes and my ID, which were in bags under the bed, were completely soaked and damaged.”
Weavers said he and his partner had sent their two children to stay with a relative because they did not want them to endure the miserable conditions.
“Every year all of our homes get flooded and it seems to be getting colder as the winter months come. The city brought us blankets, but they also get wet and then we are cold again.”
Weavers said he did not have a permanent income and had no choice but to live in Sweet Home Farm.
“I don’t have another choice. The money I earn is just enough to feed my family and survive. I understand that this was a vlei before, so the water will continue to flood our homes, but the small children are getting sick.”
Disaster Risk Management spokesman Wilfred Solomons-Johannes said although many people might have experienced discomfort because of flooding, fewer areas had been affected than four years ago.
“The city’s preventive response strategy, implemented three years ago, sees people being more aware of how to prevent flooding, including (through) safety measures… We have also increased the number of personnel to respond when help is needed to provide meals and blankets.”
Solomons-Johannes said most of the areas affected were waterlogged and flooding was unavoidable once water levels rose.
SA Weather Service forecaster Carlton Fillis said Kirstenbosch had received 87mm of rain on Thursday and Friday, one of the highest falls. Wellington had 64.8mm and the City Bowl 42.2mm. The maximum temperatures of 14°C and 15°C were normal and within the average range for winter in the city, Fillis said.