Another dam wall collapses in Jagersfontein

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A vehicle swept away by water at Charlesville, Jagersfontein, 13 September 2022, after a mine dam burst, killing one person and leaving some community members homeless. PHOTO: Nigel Sibanda

Barely a month after the Jagersfontien mine disaster, there has been another dam wall collapsed in the Free State town.

The office of Free State Premier Sisi Ntombela said water has engulfed the area of Charlesville.

Mayor of the Kopanong area‚ Xolani Tseletsele, said the incident happened at around 9pm.

Dam burst
Speaking on eNCA‚ Tseletsele said unlike the last time‚ the dam released water.

“What [the mine officials] have told me is that due to the rains we suffered in the last two days‚ the dam burst but it was only water.

“I am from the site now and had a physical look at it, it has stopped. There is no more [water] flow to the community, but what the incident has done is that it has brought back the panic to the community‚” said Tseletsele.

“The community has not completely healed after the disaster that happened on the 11th of September,” Tseletsele said.

Casulaties and damages
Tseletsele said no casualties have been reported and there has been no damages to damages to infrastructure by the latest dam burst.

This was the second dam burst in the Jaggersfontien.

Earlier this month, over 300 residents in the small Free State town were left homeless after water from a dam located at a Jagersfontein Developments mine cracked open and flooded the area.

The tailings dam left one person dead.

Investigation
Parliament has recommended a full investigation into the Jagersfontein mine disaster and the directors of the company involved.

This follows an oversight visit to the area earlier this month where it witnessed the severe destruction that included the death of people, demolition of houses, killing of livestock, damage to cars and the destruction of infrastructure.

The portfolio committee on mineral resources and energy also wants the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act reviewed to include the regulation of “tailings dams and mine dumps”.

The committee wants the investigation’s findings reported to the National Assembly as a matter of urgency.

Faizel Patel/ The Citizen