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Woman Dies as Waves Crash Into Wilderness Car Park

  • One person died after being rushed to hospital following a storm surge in George.
  • A number of homes, businesses and other structures were damaged. Large amounts of sand and debris were also strewn across coastal roadways.
  • The SA Weather Services has issued a Level 5 warning for damaging winds and waves.

An elderly woman was killed following the spring high tide that battered restaurants, houses and cars along the coast in the Eastern and Western Cape on Saturday.

A number of beaches across the Western Cape, particularly Gordon’s Bay, Stilbaai, Mossel Bay, and Three Anchor Bay in Cape Town had to be closed following the spring tide across the coastline.

According to the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI), businesses affected by the spring high tide include The Brass Bell restaurant in Kalk Bay, as well as extensive damage in George, and along the Southern Cape coastline.

“There has been quite widespread damage across the coastline, including sand dune erosion, structural damage, and we’ve learnt that NSRI Wilderness and paramedics were at a scene in Leentjiesklip, [Wilderness], yesterday (Saturday) afternoon where a 92-year-old female had sadly passed away,” said NSRI spokesperson Craig Lambinon.

He added:

Our understanding is that she was swept off her feet by a wave that crashed into a car park, also causing cars to be swept along.

Another man also had to be rushed to hospital.

City of Cape Town Disaster Management spokesperson Sonica Lategan said that disaster teams had conducted assessments around the Gordon’s Bay coastal area.

“Preliminary feedback is that some houses were damaged, as well as sand and debris left in roadways,” she said.

Assessments are still under way on Sunday morning.

High swells caused havoc in areas within the Hessequa Municipality.

Facebook PHOTO: Facebook/Andrew Stroebel

Damaged paving and infrastructure on beachfront pr

Mop-up operations are under way in the Mossel Bay Municipality following a storm surge.

Supplied PHOTO: Supplied/Mossel Bay Municipality

Beach sand washed up with surging high tide waves

Mop-up operations are under way in the Mossel Bay Municipality following a storm surge.

Supplied PHOTO: Supplied/Mossel Bay Municipality

The City’s Solid Waste department was mobilised for clean-up operations, together with traffic services and law enforcement.

Disaster teams in the Mossel Bay municipality, which has 26 beaches, are still assessing the damage.

Lambinon said their concern for Sunday was that the high tide is still persisting.

Storm warning

“We’re going to have another spring high tide between 14:00-15:00, and peaking between 17:00-18:00, depending where you are around the coastline,” he added.

Meanwhile, in the Eastern Cape, the N2 highway between the Gqeberha CBD and Bluewater Bay was reopened for traffic on Saturday evening.

According to Department of Transport spokesperson Unathi Binqose, the road had been closed due to water that washed into it.

Damaged wooden deck jetty close to coastline

Mop-up operations are under way in the Mossel Bay Municipality following a storm surge.

Supplied PHOTO: Mossel Bay Municipality

Infrastructure damaged by surging waves during spr

Mop-up operations are under way in the Mossel Bay Municipality following a storm surge.

Supplied PHOTO: Mossel Bay Municipality

“Our law enforcement and rapid response teams are keeping a close eye on the developments within that stretch,” he added.

“The road was reopened last night already. However, the threat remains as the weather conditions are still atrocious.

The SA Weather Service (SAWS) has issued a Level 5 warning for damaging winds and waves resulting in difficulty of navigation, damage to coastal infrastructure, beach erosion and possible rogue waves.