Western Cape residents must start preparing for possible flooding when the winter rains arrive to break the drought, MEC for local government Anton Bredell said on Wednesday. With the province's dam levels at a worrying average of 22.1% - with Cape Town at 23.5% - Bredell warned that residents should ready themselves for flooding.
"In the period before the expected rains, I would advise the public to clear out gutters, downpipes and runoff channels around their dwellings to ensure water can runoff freely and easily. These small proactive measures may help protect families from flooding," advised Bredell.
Motorists and travellers must avoid entering flood water, and never underestimate its strength, even if safely inside a vehicle.
Last week one person died in a flash flood in the central Karoo and, according to Bredell, recent fires around the Western Cape have denuded some mountains of their ground cover, increasing the risk of mud slides.
In the meantime, water must still be used sparingly.
Residents have managed to reduce consumption to below 700 million litres a day, but have been urged to continue saving water until it starts raining in earnest.
The drought has been declared a disaster.