Experts fear water-borne diseases following KZN floods | Infrastructure news

Recent floods in KwaZulu-Natal have caused water shortages with experts reporting that a close eye is being kept ensuring water safety from water-borne deseases.

KwaZulu-Natal’s Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) stated that environmental health practitioners are on the ground. Cogta says the practitioners are keeping an eye on the numbers to help identify any water-borne diseases. Portable water that is being transported through tankers and halls where community members are being housed, are being inspected.

Sanitation concerns

According to a report by TimesLIVE, Health officials have expressed concern over diarrhoea outbreaks in KZN. Health MEC Nomagugu Simelane shared that a number of healthcare facilities have been impacted by the torrential rains and subsequent flooding. Simelane revealed that they are aware of the water availability within the healthcare sector. She further elaborated on the related sanitation challenges.

“Our environmental health practitioners are monitoring clinical statistics for the early identification of any waterborne or diarrheal diseases. This includes the inspection of potable water that is being transported by tankers, and in halls where displaced members of the community are being housed,” Nomagugu Simelane, KZN Health MEC

Death toll

The number of people who have lost their lives in the KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) floods has risen to over 400, while approximately 27 other people remain unaccounted for. This is according to KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) COGTA MEC Sipho Hlomuka.

Heavy rainfall has left behind a trail of destruction in recent days, prompting government to declare a state of disaster in KZN. More than 4 000 homes and other infrastructure have been damaged or washed away.

The Department of Water and Sanitation will be assisting the affected municipalities with water to communities without water. In addition, mop-up operations and the repairing of damaged infrastructure commenced in the areas affected by the floods in KZN.

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