Bloem infrastructure needs urgent attention

The massive ditch on Hoërskool Sentraal’s B-rugby field that has been cornered off to ensure the safety of the learners. PHOTO: Gypseenia Lion

“The metro’s infrastructure has been neglected for over a decade. It is the direct result of poor maintenance of stormwater canals and road surfaces. The infrastructure is in a very poor state and needs urgent refurbishment.” This is according to Wallace Mcleod, the Acting HOD of Engineering Services.

He added that urgent attention is needed for aged roads, water, and sewerage infrastructure in the metro. Recent events, such as the Hoërskool Sentraal’s sinkhole, emphasises the need for urgent intervention. What started off as a small hole on the school’s rugby field about two weeks ago, turned into a massive ditch after Saturday afternoon’s storm.

The school’s spokesperson, Gerda Spies, said since the safety of their learners is their first and foremost priority, the sinkhole was immediately isolated and blocked off.

Mcleod added that the site has since been secured and investigations have commenced. “The Mangaung Metro Municipality (MMM) will finalise the assessment report by the latest Friday. Remedial work will start immediately in the coming weeks, as from next week.”

He further said the MMM is looking at proper budgeting options for infrastructure in the new municipal financial year to address the service delivery backlogs and urgent refurbishments needed. “MMM will also look into collaborations with public and private partnerships to assist with bettering the metro’s infrastructure.”

The sinkhole at the school is not the only cause for concern as another was reported under a tarred road in Bayswater.

According to DA ward councillor Selmé Pretorius, although the sinkhole was repaired in Bayswater, there is still the concern of it reopening due to unattended water leaks and the total dysfunctional stormwater system. “When it rains heavily the water is not directed properly. This can lead to more sinkholes forming.”

A concerned resident, Rhoda Africa, said she fears that it can happen at any time or place and it can be life-threatening. “Part of it is a natural disaster so we can’t blame humanity for it, but what I do know is that it can be fixed by filling it up with solid rock and also a possible solution like soil testing before building on top of it,” she said.

The Department of Community Safety, Roads and Transport’s Hillary Mophethe urged residents who come across an incident of this nature to immediately report the matter to the district office of the Mangaung Region, Rorisang Seate, on 082 059 9706.

News Team