Rescue teams scramble to evacuate KwaZulu-Natal residents affected by floods

The communities of Umlazi, Wentworth, Isipingo, Amanzimtoti, Umdloti and Tongaat have been some of the hardest hit.

The Surfside building in uMdloti was damaged during heavy rains on 21 May 2022. Picture: Nhlanhla Mabaso/Eyewitness News

CAPE TOWN - The KwaZulu-Natal government says its resources have been stretched thin as it tries to limit the impact of the floods on residents and infrastructure.

Heavy overnight rain resulted in rising flood waters in parts on the province, particularly in the Durban area.

The provincial government called an impromptu briefing on Sunday where disaster management teams as well as MECs and mayors of several districts gave an update on rescue operations.

The communities of Umlazi, Wentworth, Isipingo, Amanzimtoti, Umdloti and Tongaat have been some of the hardest hit.

Residents in low-lying areas have been urged to move to higher ground.

KwaZulu-Natal MEC for Cooperative Governance, Sipho Hlomuka urged resident to evacuate the area if asked to do so by search and rescue personnel.

"The lives that we lost in the previous disaster, is not something that we are proud of. That's why we have activated disaster management teams because we are proactive. We are alerting our people to ensure that they are in the safer zones," says Hlomuka.

On Saturday, the South African weather services issued a level 10 red warning of torrential rain and strong winds which battered the coastline overnight.

It's been barely a month since more than 450 people died in devastating floods in the province.

Rescue teams are now scrambling to evacuate as many residents to higher ground in a desperate bid to avoid a repeat of the April disaster.

According to the latest report from the South African weather service, rain will continue along the KwaZulu-Natal coast, particularly in the Durban area throughout Sunday.

Weather conditions are expected to improve from Monday 23 May 2022.