Strandfontein Ratepayers and Residents’ Association chairperson Mario Oonstendurp said sewage spills have become a common occurrence in the area, with weekly spills in various locations. Picture: Supplied
Strandfontein Ratepayers and Residents’ Association chairperson Mario Oonstendurp said sewage spills have become a common occurrence in the area, with weekly spills in various locations. Picture: Supplied

Tidal pool in Strandfontein closes again after sludge pours in while people are swimming

By Mthuthuzeli Ntseku Time of article published Oct 15, 2021

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Cape Town - The Strandfontein Ratepayers and Residents Association has demanded water test results of the Strandfontein tidal pool following its closure again due to sewage spills.

The pool was initially closed on October 2, due to sewage spills caused by a failed transformer, and was reopened a day later. However, on Tuesday sewer sludge was witnessed spilling into the pool while people were swimming.

Strandfontein Ratepayers and Residents’ Association chairperson Mario Oonstendurp said the lack of urgency by City officials to contain the spill and remedy the situation was disgusting.

“It is clear that protocols were not followed by the City when the spill recurred, by closing off the tidal pool and restricting access to the beach. We have requested that water samples be taken and an update be given as soon as possible,” he said.

Oonstendurp said sewage spills have become a common occurrence in the area, with weekly spills in various locations.

“The suburb of Bayview has had a sewage smell hanging over the area for the past few weeks. This apparently due to load shedding at the Spine Road water works facility. I am of the opinion that the current ailing infrastructure can no longer cope with the demand and needs an urgent assessment. We are at a point where the recurring spills are just been patched up, leaving the source of the problem not addressed,” said Oonstendurp.

Ward Councillor Elton Jansen said he requested that the pool be closed until they know the quality of the water.

“I have reported this to the City manager as well as the executive director for water and sanitation. The sewage spill at the Pavilion is a great concern and I have requested that the water quality be tested for the safety of the people using the area,” he said.

Mayco member for water and waste Xanthea Limberg said the incident was caused by a blown transformer in combination with objects and materials dumped into the sewer line.

Mayco member for community service and health Zahid Badroodien said sample results received on Monday confirmed non-compliance due to elevated E.coli levels.

“The City’s recreation and parks and health departments conducted a site visit on October 13. It was observed that the overflow stopped, taking into account the non-compliant results, re-samples were taken for analysis and a coordinated decision was made on-site to close the tidal pool and beach area until the results are available and compliant,” said Badroodien.

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