The regional government said in a tweet that the tragedy was “one of the darkest moments in the history of KwaZulu-Natal province.”
“We reunite with families in mourning the lives we lost as a result of heavy rains,” the government wrote. “We would like to commend the Disaster Management Committees for their tireless work in evacuating the affected communities.”
A bridge near Durban was swept away, leaving people stranded on both sides.
“The heavy rains that have lashed our land for the past few days have caused untold devastation and unleashed massive damage to lives and infrastructure,” it said.
The provincial government later said it would continue to work with the national government to ensure that relief is provided to all those affected.
Sifo Hlomuka, a member of the executive committee for Cooperative Personality and Heritage Affairs in KwaZulu-Natal, said on Twitter on Tuesday that evacuation teams were working in areas that had experienced “landslides, floods and structural demolition of buildings and roads”.
“Heavy rains have damaged power connections in many municipalities and technical teams are working 24 hours a day to restore electricity,” Hlomuka added.
Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda told reporters that flooded power stations in the severely affected eThekwini municipality were inaccessible, while water connections were also damaged.
The local government has asked private and religious organizations to assist in emergency relief efforts and has sought the help of the South African National Guard to provide air support, he said.
Extreme weather events followed by heavy rains and flooding in parts of South Africa, with three tropical cyclones and two tropical cyclones in six weeks from late January. 230 deaths have been reported and 1 million people have been affected.
Scientists at the World Meteorological Agency (WWA) project – analyzing how a climate crisis can contribute to a serious weather event – have found that climate change has made those events even more possible.
“We’re once again seeing how those less responsible for climate change are being impacted,” Friedrich Otto, WWA’s member of the Grantham Institute for Climate Change and the Environment at London’s Imperial College, said Tuesday. Storms in South Africa.
“Rich countries must respect their obligations and increase the much-needed funding for adaptation, and provide compensation with compensation for losses and damages to victims of extreme events driven by climate change,” he added.
At the COP27 conference in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt in November, it is expected to be a key point in the next international climate talks.
About 200 years ago, scientists warned that before industrialization, the world should try to raise global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above global warming to prevent some irreversible impact of climate change. The Earth is already 1.2 degrees warmer.
CNN’s Amy Cassidy and George Engels contributed to the story.
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