Coast KZN

10 Sep 2020

Sewage spill causes big stink for Avoca Hills residents

Zainul Dawood (Daily News: IOL) Picture: Zainul Dawood: eThekwini councillor Pete Graham alongside Khabazela Road in Avoca Hills.It is alleged that wastewater has been leaking onto the road since 2016.

Durban – A swimming pool-sized dam of what is believed to be wastewater collecting behind homes has caused a stink in Avoca Hills. A stream running through a greenbelt between Avoca Hills Drive and Khabazela Road has been polluted with this water. The stream flows along the N2 past Kenville, the Northern Wastewater Plant in Sea Cow Lake before joining with the Umgeni River near the SPCA.

Wastewater leaking from a manhole behind Thobeka Zulu’s home could be contributing to the pool just beyond their back fence. Zulu said they informed ward councillor Pete Graham who escalated the matter with the relevant department.

“An eThekwini Municipality inspector came here in July. They had a look at the water pouring out of the manhole. He said he would come back with a truck that has a pressure jet pipe or a team to unblock the drain. We are still waiting,” Zulu said on Wednesday.

The Zulu residence is occupied by seven people including two babies. Thobeka said her parents got the house in 2007. Her sister Nomthando Zulu said they have to keep the door closed because of the stench and flies.

“It is not the first time this has occurred. We have now placed a steel sheet around the manhole to prevent the children from falling into the mud around it. It is unacceptable,” she said.

Graham said the stench along the footpath between Nkwali Place and Avoca Hills Drive was unbearable at times. Residents and school children using the footpath step onto bricks to cross over the stream which is flowing with wastewater. Next to the footpath, the water has pooled. Graham said there was a sludge-like mud on the surface.

“It has been like this for three months. Wastewater found a hollow in the ground and it became a dam.

I advised the city wastewater department to inspect with a Hazchem team and bring along a high-pressure water jetting and liquid waste honey sucker,” he said.

Graham said the blockages were backing into people’s home. Some have to open their drains and use a stick to unblock them. Graham said since 2016, a manhole has been blocked and leaking onto Khabazela Road. A pile of sand surrounds the manhole.

The eThekwini municipality had not responded at the time of going to print.