Port Elizabeth and surrounding areas have recorded the second wettest winter on record, surpassing the record rain of 33 years.
South African Weather Services regional spokesperson Garth Sampson said the first seven months of the year were by far the wettest on record, with 695mm measured up to July 31.
Sampson said the 2002 record of 405mm for the second wettest winter was surpassed on Sunday when 424mm of rain was measured. Sampson recently said the previous record was in 1979, when 673mm was measured in total.
“With 16 days left this winter, 28mm of rain is needed to set a new winter-rainfall record. More rain is predicted for later this week in Port Elizabeth,” said Sampson.
Two people in the KwaDwesi area were reported to have drowned following heavy rains in the area.
Last week two main water pipes were washed away in the Van Staden area, resulting in water shortages in the city. The pipes have since been fixed.
On Sunday, the Nelson Mandela Bay municipality reported that the second of the two pipelines washed away by the heavy rains some two weeks ago had been recommissioned ahead of schedule.
“This is good news for the longer-term security of water supply to our city, and water has already started to flow. Our water situation is still under stress and residents are again asked to use water sparingly to ensure that all areas in the city receive minimum supply,” said Marthie Nel, acting communications director.
The dams from which the city’s water is supplied are all overflowing. The municipality now has sufficient water supply for at least another 12 months. The weather bureau predicts 30% chances of rain for tomorrow and Thursday.