Collapsed roads crisis

Lee-Anne Butler

MOTORISTS travelling between Port Elizabeth and East London can not use either the N2 or the alternative R72 after sections of both routes collapsed.

Traffic is now being directed to the N10 and R63 via Cookhouse and Bedford, according to provincial Arrive Alive spokesman Tshepo Machaea.

Provincial police spokesman for disaster management Captain John Fobian said the R72, from Nanaga to Port Alfred, was closed yesterday afternoon after a section of the Kasouga Bridge collapsed. Fobian said a section of the road between Port Alfred and Alexandria had also collapsed, about 3km away from the bridge. He said motorists travelling to Port Alfred or East London could use the road from Port Elizabeth to Cookhouse (N10), then on to the R63 to Bedford, Adelaide, Fort Beaufort and Grahamstown, and then the N2 to East London. Also available was the R63 from Bedford to Adelaide, Fort Beaufort and then to Alice, King Williams Town and East London.

Another road in the province affected by flood damage is the R330 connecting Humansdorp and St Francis Bay, which was closed after a section of the Sandriver Bridge washed away at the weekend.

The R330 between Humansdorp and Hankey is also closed as the Weston Bridge, just before Hankey, is under water.

In Nelson Mandela Bay, roads that are still closed include the R333 to Koedoeskloof, Old Uitenhage Road, Black Thorn Road, Summer Road in North End, Seaview Road, the Third Avenue Dip and the Chelmsford Avenue bridge off Target Kloof.

In Buffalo City, road closures include Baden Powell Road to Horseshoe Valley and Two Rivers Drive. There are large and deep potholes on Black Road between Sunnyridge and Pritchard Road.

The R72 between Alexandria and Port Alfred is open, but it remains hazardous and traffic is moving slowly with stop-and-go controls. The road is closed to heavy duty vehicles.

The R68 between Bathurst and Port Alfred was closed yesterday morning but is expected to be reopened today.

In Kouga, road closures include the St Francis Bay to Oyster Bay route which has only been opened for 4x4s. The Loerie Road, from the Gamtoos Ferry Hotel to Loerieheuwel remains closed as the Melon Bridge is still flooded. In Hankey, the Milton Bridge is also still under water.

In Jeffreys Bay, Johan Muller Boulevard in Paradise Beach is closed, as are sections of Cormorant Crescent and Dolphin Drive in Aston Bay. Apiesdraai, on the road from Jeffreys Bay to Aston Bay, is also closed.

In St Francis Bay the Mahe Beat Bridge over the canals has been badly damaged and is closed.

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