Category Archives: Events
Heavy rain, accidents and late trains caused chaos on Cape Town’s roads on Thursday morning.
Frustrated motorists and commuters took to Twitter to complain about traffic delays and late trains due to the rain and cable theft in Philippi.
Merle Lourens, spokeswoman for the City of Cape Town’s traffic services, said traffic delays on the N1 were due to flooding of the road near the Koeberg Interchange coming into the city.
“There was also a minor accident on the N1 incoming involving two vehicles, but there were no injuries and the road has been cleared.”
A serious accident on the N2 outbound near the airport exit was also reported.
One student, Marisha Eygelaar, tweeted that she was going to be late for class after it took her 90 minutes to get from Durbanville to Canal Walk.
Another user, @anib, who was on the N1, tweeted: “So the N1 is completely backed up. Turn around and go home.”
Lourens said Chapman’s Peak had also been closed because of the rain as rocks sometimes fall from the mountain. Traffic had been diverted via the M3 and Constantia route.
In Hout Bay in Harbour Road, there were delays as a result of a fire at one of the fish factories, she said.
Metrorail spokeswoman Riana Scott said the cable theft at Philippi station this morning had caused defective signals between Kasselsvlei and Bellvile stations.
She said a Malmesbury train had also broken down at Stikland station.
“As a result, trains on the northern and central service areas were delayed, some for more than 90 minutes.”
She said technicians were expected to finish repairs on Thursday afternoon
Part of the N1, one of the province’s major transport arteries, has been washed away.
This follows a flash flood in the Hex River Valley that saw three days of sporadic hail and thunderstorms destroy large portions of several grape farms’ harvests in the area.
Trucks and cars are being diverted several kilometres through De Doorns and other smaller roads in the valley since the N1 was severely damaged in Thursday night’s flash flood.
As most of the Western Cape sweltered in heatwave conditions this week, the thunderstorms in the Hex River Valley left farmers in the valley, along with those in De Doorns and Touws River, yesterday counting the cost of the damage to their grape harvest.
Thursday’s flood was particularly damaging, with 70mm of rain recorded in a few hours.
The affected grape farms
supply grapes not only to the local market but international ones as well, especially Europe, where there is a high demand. Fears have now been raised that the loss of crops could mark the end for several of the farms.
Wouter Kriel, spokesman for Western Cape Agricultural and Rural Development MEC Gerrit van Rensburg, said several farms had suffered “quite extensive damage”.
“We are aware of at least five farms that were quite badly affected and are grateful the number wasn’t much higher.
“Unfortunately, since this was an act of nature and unexpected, there is just no way to prepare.”
He confirmed there were now concerns about the harvest being delivered, but said the damage was still being assessed at this stage.
“No farms have yet requested assistance and no plan from the department has been formulated. Once we have a grip on things we will proceed with a plan of action,” Kriel said.
Agri Western Cape spokeswoman Portia Adams said the full extent of the damage would only be known in about a week.
“At this stage we know of two to six farmers who suffered severe individual losses, but we are hopeful they can survive. The side-effects of the flood and weather will only be seen when they go to the market in a week’s time,” she said, adding that they were offering support wherever possible.
Anton Viljoen, owner of ASV farms, which is one of the largest producers in the area, said about 20 farmers had suffered damage to their fields. He estimated he could have lost as much as 30 percent of his harvest.
“We had some heavy thunderstorms and hail on Tuesday and Wednesday, but nothing on the scale of Thursday. Some of the homes of farmers were evacuated, but luckily their houses didn’t suffer much damage,” he said, adding that they were trying to regroup and clean up.
“We are starting with spraying the grapes against fungus after the rainfall.”
But Viljoen conceded he faced an uphill battle to recover.
“It’s pretty tough for us in the current economic climate. We’re just going to have to try and break even and hope for better luck next year.”
Farmworkers have been deployed to focus on repairs, so they weren’t dealing with the remaining grape harvest, said worker Desmond Jonkerman.
“The damage means we can’t work for the next few days, which is very bad for many of the people of the area who depend on the farms for work, especially with the grape season.
“All we can do is wait things out and hope we can get back to work by Monday,” he said.
Yesterday, law enforcement agencies, municipality and farm workers were using bulldozers and tractors to try and clear the debris.
A portion of the Hex River Valley’s main road, where it meets the N1, has also been destroyed by the flood.
One of the clean-up managers, who did not wish to be named, said rain had built up in a catchment area, then overflowed down the mountain into the town.
“The debris from the mountain, mixed with the water, formed silt which clogged up the pipes under the road. With no place for the water to drain into, it destroyed the road.”
The water also flooded several factories in the town’s industrial area and workers at the Hexkoel factory were using bulldozers and brooms to clean up the silt. Some minor damage was also reported to some homes at an informal settlement in Touws River on Wednesday, but this was quickly repaired.
In the nearby Orchard area, floodwaters damaged a small bridge.
Brit teens to learn South African family values
BBC documentary makers seek participants for new show in South Africa
The BBC documentary series, ‘World’s Strictest Parents’, are calling on Cape Town parents to participate in their new show in South Africa.
The series gets to the heart of the important and topical issue of parenting by exploring different parenting techniques and family values from around the world. During each hour-long program, two British teenagers are sent to live with one family abroad to experience life in their country, under their house rules.
“We want to show South Africa as an inspirational place to live by featuring parents who believe in discipline, boundaries and respect, while embracing progress and development in the country,” explains assistant producer, Rebecca Symons, “We’re hoping for parents who are professionals in their field and instil a good work, as well as socially responsible, ethic in their children.”
Video: The World’s Strictest Parents Australian promo offers a taste of what we can expect from the upcoming, South African series.
The teens should be treated as part of the family, rather than as guests, and will be expected to attend school, partake in household chores and activities. Both parents are required to speak English well.
“What is apparent from past shows is that although strict boundaries are in place, parents ultimately love their children and only have their best interests at heart,” says Rebecca.
The teenagers are not related and are boys and girls aged between 16 and 18-years-old. The children are cast because of difficulties at home including smoking, laziness, drinking and too much, and a general lack of respect. Rebecca believes that a change of scenery might be just the wake-up-call for teenagers in danger of making the wrong choices in life.
Rebecca adds: “The teenagers cast have voluntarily applied to participate, which is testament to their desire to improve family relationships back in the U.K.”
If you think your family’s got what it takes contact Rebecca Symons at RebeccaSymons@twentytwenty.tv
Michael Jackson – History, This Is It tribute show
The Michael Jackson tribute show, History – This Is It heads to South Africa where it will be performed at GrandWest this August
The History Tribute show takes the audience through a historical journey, beginning with the Jackson 5 and ending with the legendary king of pop, Michael Jackson.
Kenny Wizz, the internationally acclaimed Michael Jackson impersonator, will uncannily relive Michael on the GrandWest Arena stage.
With a voice eerily echoing Jackson’s, Kenny Wizz visually completes the show by moon-walking, dancing and singing exactly like him too.
The show features many iconic costumes and over twenty well-known Michael Jackson hits from Billy Jean to Beat It, Thriller and many more, all guaranteed to get the audience on their feed and dancing.
The HIStory tribute show opens at 20:00 and tickets costs are R150p/p and are available from Computicket.
Date: 20 August 2011