Outcry over Durban sewage spill

Municipal teams were pouring peroxide and chemicals into the creek on Saturday.

MUNICIPAL mechanical and electrical teams have been working around the clock to resolve an electrical issue at the Mahatma Gandhi Wastewater Pump Station which resulted in a sewage spill into the Port of Durban last week.

According to Tozi Mthethwa, eThekwini head of communications, internal electrical failures affected the actuators that control the movement of gates at the pump station.

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“This in turn results in these gates not operating correctly. As a reaction and mitigation measure to this, we will disinfect any overflows and mechanically aerate the water in order to improve oxygen levels. We are also monitoring water quality during and after these measures,” she said.

Members of the Point Yacht Club started noticing evidence of the spill last week and reported it to the municipality and Transnet Ports Authority.

“With the recent periods of rain, there has been a huge inflow of sewage through Lavender Creek and the entire marina area was a disgusting cesspool over the weekend. The Port addressed this with the municipality and teams poured peroxide and chemicals into the Creek on Saturday,”said Rear Commodore of Dinghies, Myles White.

Berea Mail also received correspondence between an environmental specialist from Transnet National Ports Authority and an official from the Department of Environmental Affairs dating back to May 2017 after repeated leaks were noticed in the harbour.

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At the time, the specialist urged the municipality to investigate the cause and advised it to include a root-cause analysis and identification and suggested the implementation of suitable preventative measures to avoid leaks from happening again, as they had a huge impact on the environment.

Mthethwa assured the public that the overflow would not affect any bathing beaches or drinking water.



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Lauren Walford

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