One dead, another injured as mop up operations begin after freakish weather lashes Cape coast and Gordon’s Bay



Published Sep 17, 2023


After freakishly high waves caused chaos along the Cape’s coastline on Saturday, mop-up operations had begun.

Pictures and videos of high waves during the Spring tide washing away cars across in Gordon’s Bay or causing destruction to seaside restaurants have since gone viral.

At least 16 areas within the City of Cape Town were also without electricity due to the storm.

On Sunday, the City of Cape Town said there are road closures in place along Baden Powell Drive, Beach Road and the R44, Beach Roadd and Gordon's Bay Road due to high seas and localised flooding.

The spokesperson for Disaster Risk Management, Charlotte Powell told IOL assessment of damages will continue on Sunday.

“Our Disaster Management teams went out yesterday [Saturday] to do assessments around the Gordon's Bay coastal area. Preliminary feedback is that some houses were damaged as well as sand and debris in roadways. Assessments will continue this morning.

“The City’s Solid Waste department has been mobilised for clean-up operations, together with Traffic services, Law Enforcement and Metro Police. The impacts of the weather warnings were more felt on the Garden Route outside of the City of Cape Town boundaries,” Powell said.

Craig Lambinon, spokesperson for the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) confirmed one death had been reported.

“In George and the Southern Cape coastline there has been widespread damage including sand dune erosion, and structural damage.

NSRI Wilderness and paramedics were on the scene at Lentjiesklip where a 93-year-old female passed away.

“Our understanding is that she was swept off her feet by a wave that penetrated the car park and she sadly passed away in what appears to be a weather-related incident.

“A man was also injured and he was transported to hospital,” Lambinon said.

He said there are concerns for Sunday afternoon and appealed to the public to monitor communication from the South African Weather Service (SAWS).

“This weather system has been unusual in the sense that it is from the one side of South Africa on the west coast all the way around on the east coast.

We are aware that the South African Weather Service has issued a Level 6 alert.

What is concerning is that from between 3pm and 6pm there is the potential of storm surges along our coastline, particularly along the east coast but notwithstanding the Western Cape coastline, the Southern Cape, Eastern Cape, and into KwaZulu-Natal and north up the east coasts,” Lambinon said.

The public is urged not to place themselves in unnecessary risks or danger.

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