Relief as flood-damaged road repaired

A SECTION of Chelmsford Avenue that collapsed during last month’s devastating floods has been temporarily repaired, much to the relief of Essexvale residents.
According to Ward 3 DA councillor Dave Hayselden everything is “back to normal”.
“The municipality did a great job repairing the road,” he said.
The force of the overflowing Baakens River had caused part of the road that led to the bridge to collapse.
From debris to whole trees were seen drifting down the river and, according to an eye-witness, one resident’s car was washed away like a “ping pong ball in a pool”.
Part of the ground beneath the garage of one of the houses had also given away.
The collapse of the road resulted in residents on the far side being stranded for three days.
An 87-year-old resident had to be rescued by Metro Rescue services, Guardmed and the SAPS after he developed health problems and had to be taken to hospital.
Another Chelmsford Avenue resident, James Lombard, was getting ready to go out when the road collapsed.
“I heard shouting and I saw people moving their cars. It was quite hectic,” said Lombard.
He said his house had been flooded when water came rushing through the back door.
“My back wall collapsed. It was a blessing in disguise because it caused a lot of the water from my flooded garden to flow out.”
Lombard, who could not get to work for two days, said he had to walk through a neighbour’s yard and through the bush to visit the shops.
“I am amazed at how quickly it (the road) got fixed,” he said.
In an anonymous letter, one resident complained that he had reported several months ago that the bridge was in danger from the build-up of logs and tree trunks across the openings which were obstructing the flow of water.
In response, Hayselden said that debris was not responsible for the road collapsing.
“There was just too much water and the force was unbelievable,” he said.
“No one could have predicted such a storm.”
According to Hayselden, the road has been repaired to withstand a higher force of water.

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