Cape Town - Flooded roads and hammering rain overnight and into Saturday saw 14 crashes recorded by late afternoon, with at least five people dead.
Disaster Risk Management’s statistics on Saturday afternoon showed that more than 18 000 people had been left homeless due to flooding. They had distributed more than 18 000 meals, along with more than 11 000 blankets. Among areas worst affected were Kanana in Gugulethu and S Section in Khayelitsha, where a total of 2 400 people needed assistance.
Traffic was gridlocked out of the city on Friday afternoon, and Traffic Services spokeswoman Maxine Jordaan said along with the eight crashes between 4pm and 6pm on Friday, there had been a further eight overnight.
The driver of a Toyota Corolla died in a crash at about 7.15pm on Friday night when the vehicle collided with a Golden Arrow bus on the corner of Robert Sobukwe Road and Symphony Way.
Three passengers were injured.
In another major incident, at about 1.15pm on Saturday, a truck overturned on the N2 just after Hospital Bend. Of the 15 people being transported in the truck, three were seriously injured.
Jordaan said flash floods had hit all arterial roads but that drainage systems were mostly working well.
Social media reports said roads were flooded in Ravensmead, Paarden Eiland, Khayelitsha, Belgravia, Durbanville, Heideveld and Wynberg. “People need to remember to put their headlights on and maintain a safe following distance,” Jordaan said.
Emergency Medical Services (EMS) spokeswoman Emerantia Cupido said although 65 ambulance and rescue crews were on duty, along with EMS crews from outlying areas on standby, they had responded to only one major incident when two cars collided on the R60 at about 9am on Saturday.
She said three men who were passengers in the cars died on the scene, while a fourth died later. Another person was seriously injured.
On Saturday the Table Mountain Cableway was closed. A number of hikers had however “reported snow” and
posted pictures on social media throughout on Saturday.
Further afield, snow was also reported in towns across the Overberg.
The Boland received its own snowy coating.
Snow reports also came in from Calvinia and Sutherland in the Northern Cape.
By on Saturday afternoon the rain had mostly dispersed. Predictions for Sunday were for a low of 8ºC, rising to a maximum of 11ºC.