Johannesburg - Heavy rains caused flooding and accidents on Joburg’s roads, also leading to a car being washed away and its driver swimming to safety.
The SA Weather Service issued a warning on Tuesday morning that there would be significantly reduced visibility and flooding in Joburg.
Emergency Management Services spokeswoman Nana Radebe said a team responded to an “unstable” house in Alexandra township due to the heavy rain.
“Our team of emergency workers are waiting for our heavy rescue team to help stabilise the house,” she said.
ER24 spokeswoman Luyanda Majija said that aside from bumper bashings, a male pedestrian was left in a critical condition after being hit by a car.
The accident happened on the N14 in Muldersdrift, west of Joburg.
“The man, who lay approximately 100m from the vehicle, suffered serious head trauma but was stabilised on scene,” Majija said.
The driver of the car, who is 22, was also injured.
“It is not clear how the accident happened but both patients were transported to Leratong Hospital for further medical care,” she added.
A car plunged into a stream after the driver attempted to cross a low-level bridge at the bottom of Grosvenor Road between River Road and Brook Avenue in Bryanston.
“The bridge is unstable, it’s been like this for years,” said bystander Peter Lewer.
“It happened at about 6.45am I think. According to another bystander, the woman driving the car managed to swim to safety.
“People just mustn’t drive over it, because once it rains the pump holes underneath become blocked and water covers the bridge.”
Medics and traffic commentators on social media reported a number of accidents: a car which had rolled down an embankment on the N12 west near Edenvale, heavy delays on the N1 South from Allandale Road to the Buccleuch interchange, a fallen tree in Bryanston, and an accident on Cedar Road in Fourways.
Metro police spokesman Wayne Minnaar said at 9am that he could not give an accident update because there was a power outage and the radio control room was not working.
An hour later, they were back online and Minnaar said there had been a total of 32 accidents, in 13 of which injuries were reported.
Added to the accidents, there were numerous power failures across the city. Joburg City Power’s call centre said there were outages in Atholl, Atholhurst, Houghton Estate, Illovo, Juskei Park, Northriding, Olivedale and Randpark Ridge.
The DA spokesman for health in Gauteng, Jack Bloom, said there was a power failure in Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital on Monday night and that a generator had not kicked in.
“Fortunately, back-up batteries in the ventilators helped doctors in the trauma unit,” said Bloom.
“The continuing power failures at this hospital are a scandal, but there has been little accountability.”