Victoria Falls Reporter
VICTORIA Falls residents are counting their losses after flash floods caused by incessant rains that pounded the city since Friday destroyed pre-cast walls, household property, gardens and washed away some roads.
The rains started falling on Friday morning until late afternoon before resuming on Saturday morning until evening.
It was also raining yesterday.
The worst affected areas are ward nine especially around shopping centre and near Vehicle Inspectorate Department Victoria Falls depot, ward 10 behind Mosi-oa-Tunya High School and ward eight around Esikhwahleni area.
The low-density area and central business district where hotels and lodges are were not affected.
While there were no fatalities, some roads especially near Truck Stop and small bridges were damaged.
In some yards, water levels rose to above knee level resulting in pre-cast walls falling especially those without weep holes.
Some water pipes were also left exposed due to massive soil erosion.
Most roads in Mkhosana were impassable as they were flooded resulting in water flowing into yards.
Poor drainage has been blamed for worsening the situation as most parts of the city have no storm drains while the available ones are too shallow to contain massive run-off.
Residents could also be to blame judging by the amount of litter such as plastic bottles, plastic paper and other garbage that was washed down by run-off.
Scores of people lost household property such as beds, stoves, refrigerators and electrical gadgets as well as food which was soaked in water.
Some residents had to drill holes through their house walls to redirect water which had flooded some rooms.
In ward 10 there were more than a dozen houses whose pre-cast concrete walls were destroyed. One of the affected residents, Mr Lizwe Moyo said water had risen close to two metres against the pre-cast wall in his yard before it gave in.
“The challenge in our area is that the drainage is too small and when it rains heavily water flows into yards. Water was almost reaching the top of the pre-cast concrete wall when it fell. My neighbours were also affected and some had to drill through walls of the houses to allow water to drain as it flooded inside,” he said.
Residents have implored authorities to come up with an urgent solution to avoid disaster.
Another resident who preferred to remain anonymous in Mkhosana said all her property was soaked in rain.
“I don’t think I will be left with anything because everything was soaked in water. We spent the whole of Saturday scooping water using buckets but we couldn’t finish it as it kept raining. We wish there could be a solution to this because there could be disaster in future if this poor drainage issue is not addressed,” she said. Victoria Falls Mayor Councillor Somveli Dlamini visited the affected areas to assess the extent of disaster.
“The worst affected areas are in wards eight, 10 and 11 where some residents lost pre-cast concrete wall and some roads were washed away. Fortunately, enough service delivery like water provision and electricity were not affected. The council will sit and work out a solution but a long-term solution is construction of storm drain.