Water Department warns it’s opening sluice gates at Vaal and Hazelmere Dams
The department warned the situation in KZN is also at a critical level with much-localised flooding being experienced.
KZN Floods in Toti kwazulu-Natal. Photo: Facebook/Storm.dj
The Department of Water and Sanitation says it has to open sluice gates at the Vaal and Hazelmere Dams on Tuesday, 12 April 2022, following the recent heavy downpours.
Vaal Dam residents cautioned
This comes after huge amounts of inflows were experienced due to the large amount of rainfall experienced in the area.
“As of this morning, the inflows were at 1065.67 cubic meters per second. The Vaal – which supplies most parts of Gauteng – now stands at 110,5% while Bloemhof Dam is at 106,9%,” department spokesperson Sputnik Ratau said.
DWS Hydrology experts have made further recommendations for more releases from the Bloemhof Dam, which is downstream from the Vaal Dam.
“The discharge at the Bloemhof Dam is currently at 354.37 and will be increased to 500 cubic meters per second, and further increased to 600 cubic meters per second later today at 2 pm,” said Ratau.
Hazelmere Dam residents warned
The department warned the situation in KwaZulu-Natal is also at a critical level with much-localised flooding being experienced.
“A decision has been reached for Umgeni Water to release water from the Hazelmere Dam, which is located to the north of Durban.”
The level in the dam reached beyond 65% and will be reduced to 53% overnight.
“This is necessitated by the ongoing work to raise the dam wall, therefore the reduction to 53% or lower is a safety measure while the work is still continuing,” explained Ratau.
The department has issued a warning to the affected downstream communities.
“Residents are warned to steer clear of the dam areas. Communities with equipment in and near the dams are asked to remove them so as to ensure that no damage is caused,” said Ratau
Compiled by Narissa Subramoney