Pretoria - Residents of Lyttelton Manor in Centurion woke up to a large sinkhole on Sunday morning.
Burger Street in the small suburb has been closed off due to the sinkhole that started as a small hole but later affected two properties in the area, making it it virtually impossible for cars to drive on the road.
However, one of the property owners who was badly affected by the sinkhole was not fazed by the natural disaster.
Speaking to the “Pretoria News” yesterday, the homeowner, who identified herself only as Anel, said the natural disaster had actually brought the people of Lyttelton together as they lend a hand to those who were affected.
“Yes it’s a disaster, but to me this is a story of hope. How people from all walks of life in this area came together to help was amazing. It shows that communities can stick together… and they did. Black or white… everybody came together and helped.
“It’s the first time I’ve seen something like that. Yesterday (Sunday) councillors from different wards came here with equipment to help break some of the walls so we could access the street. That to me is commitment to a better South Africa,” Anel said.
She said many of the residents stayed up until 3am on Monday assisting with the sinkhole.
“Just imagine if we can get together with something like a sinkhole as South Africans, what else we can do? I saw people’s hands get dirty and I saw children instead of playing, getting together helping where they could. It shows that when people are needed the most, they deliver.”
Anel said the the sinkhole started as a small hole on Saturday, but suddenly grew bigger to be as massive as it was by Monday morning.
She praised the Lyttelton fire department for acting swiftly on Sunday to close off the area.
“I take my hat off to the Lyttelton fire department. They came as quickly as they could on a Sunday morning to close off the area so that cars would not fall in.
“It’s remarkable how things panned out and how we got together, from security guards to police officers, in a community that consists of black and white. That should give each and everyone of us hope.
“We complain a lot about what is happening in the country, but this goes to show that we can turn it into a different story if we help each other,” she said.
Although Anel had to evacuate her house after her gate and wall fence had sunk in completely into the ground, she said she understood that the City of Tshwane would not be in a position to help at the moment.
“The municipality is currently going through a strike of their own at the moment and can probably help after they have sorted out the strike action,” she said.
The metro has been on a shutdown recently with its employees downing tools to demand a 5.4% pay increase.
However, the municipality has vowed not to give in to their demands.
The City had warned motorists to use alternative routes by yesterday morning. It said officials were already arranging to cut the water supply as the sinkhole filled with water.
Sinkholes have become rife in Centurion, threatening the lives of residents, motorists, businesses and jobs alike due to road closures that decreases sales.
The “Pretoria News” reported earlier this year that business people and residents have complained about the impact of road closures and restrictions on businesses that rely on the movement of people and vehicle traffic to trade profitably.