Coast KZN

24 Aug 2023

Ballito man’s tumble raises maintenance concerns at promenade

Juan Venter (North Coast Courier) Picture: Mark Brown at the railing which is still to be repaired.

Ballito resident Mark Brown says he still limps and experiences pain after a fall two Sundays ago when a wooden railing gave way at the promenade, just south of Willard Beach.

The 40-year-old two-time Comrades Marathon runner said he was walking along the promenade with girlfriend Tunya Thomas when they ran into friends, stopping to have a chat. After leaning his 100 kg frame against the wooden railing, it gave way and he fell backward from a height of about a metre, narrowly missing a large rock. He injured his left knee and right shoulder, also potentially damaging ligaments.

“I have no doubt this was caused by a lack of maintenance,” he said, noting he reported the matter to the KwaDukuza Municipality.

An inspection of the promenade revealed the issue to be mostly isolated to the stretch of promenade near the Les Mouettes complex, where some of the wooden railings show signs of deterioration.

A lack of maintenance is visible at several parts of the promenade.

Ballito UIP, although not responsible for maintenance of the promenade, had placed danger tape at the site of the fall where the railing is yet to be replaced.

KwaDukuza municipal spokesperson, Sifiso Zulu on Tuesday said they conducted inspections at the site, and a recommendation was made to replace the railing by the end of this week. He said as a long-term intervention, the municipality started with a process during the financial year of 2022/23 to refurbish the entire Ballito promenade. This is being done in phases, dependent on the availability of funds and the extent of risk to the public.

“It must be noted that a budget has been allocated for the promenade in the current financial year. Procurement processes for the start of phase two is in progress,” he said.

Assessments, he said, were done on the stretch of promenade from The Bay to Willard Beach with the bill of quantities being finalised.

“The area to be refurbished will be completed before the start of the December festive season,” he concluded.