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East residents suffer as underground spring devastates driveways

The water issue in the suburb of the east of Pretoria has seen some residents’ damaging their vehicles while driving through deface driveways.

Residents of Willow Park Manor in the east of Pretoria have struggled with groundwater seeping through their driveways for almost two months now – and the end is not in sight yet.

While spring groundwater in water-scarce parts of SA would be a saving grace, for residents of Sklaar Street it has become agony as it has left their driveways damaged.

Resident Connie Mampuru, whose driveway was damaged by the spring, said she became despondent when she heard that the water came from an underground spring.

“We thought we were dealing with a burst pipe because of our old water infrastructure, but now we just feel powerless because it is groundwater which the municipality says will take a long to fix. It has been almost two months already that we have had this issue,” Mampuru said.

This driveway has been damaged by the spring. Photo: Supplied

Mampuru said she and other residents reported the seepage back in April, but struggled to get effective assistance. After the matter was reported, Tshwane metro officials went to the site to investigate.

They reportedly dug a deep hole but the hole has filled up and the water is running again.

Mampuru said she damaged her vehicle last week while driving on the damaged driveway.

The metro dug a hole to catch the water in the east of Pretoria. Photo: Supplied

“This is very uncomfortable, sometimes we cannot even drive out of the yard; we are trapped inside our yards,” Mampuru said.

Another resident, who asked not to be named, said he had lived in the area for several years and from time to time they struggled with the dampness of the ground in the area.

“I have been here for about 22 years. This year was extremely bad because of the high rainfall and the water table here is very high. There is a lot of dampness, and we had a lot of structural collapse problems because of the rainfall we had last year,” the resident said.

The resident said he pitied the elderly residents whose driveways collapsed and hence struggled to drive out of their homes.

“The officials told me that the issue will be reported to the metro and possibly be put on a budget but didn’t say which year,” he said.

“As taxpayers, we just want to see something being done about it.”

A resident and a Tshwane metro official inspect the water leak. Photo: Supplied

He said usually the ground dried up in June, but that was not the case this year.

“The water is still running but most of it is confined by the deep hole. The hole is unfenced. Luckily for us, we do not have kids that run around the streets playing because that could have been dangerous for them. Even as an adult, if I would fall in there I would struggle to get out.”

Metro spokesperson Lindela Mashigo said the municipality found that the water emanated from an underground spring, not a leaking water pipe.

“The matter had been referred to our roads department for further investigation and mitigation in diverting the groundwater to the nearest stormwater catch pit,” Mashigo said.

“Once the department has finalised their investigation, they will guide on timelines in this regard.”

ALSO READ: Tshwane metro replaces more than 50-years-old decaying asbestos water pipes

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