Photo: Twitter / @CityPowerJhb
Photo: Twitter / @CityPowerJhb
The Gauteng Health Department expressed concern about ongoing water disruptions that are negatively affecting service delivery at some hospitals in the province, on Monday 31 June. This comes after Rand Water reported a power failure on Sunday that disrupted the water supply to the City of Johannesburg, Rand West, Merafong City and Mogale Local Municipalities.
The health facilities affected by the power failure include Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital (CHBAH) and Leratong Hospital in the West Rand, meanwhile ongoing water restrictions in the Brixton, Crosshill and Hursthill areas of Gauteng continue to affect the water supply to the Helen Joseph Hospital (HJH) and Rahima Moosa Mother & Child Hospital (RHMMCH)
According to spokesperson for the Gauteng MEC for health, Kwara Kekana, parts of CHBAH are without water as of Monday while there is low pressure in some areas. Leratong Hospital’s water supply, however, has been restored with low pressure.
“We continue to appeal to communities and our patients to bear with us as various government agencies are working to find lasting solutions to the prevailing challenges which are outside our core mandate,” said Kekana.
Affected health facilities in Gauteng have used water tankers as an interim water supply but since hospitals require tons of sustained water to function properly, the stopgap measure only allows for limited service delivery.
Since last week, RHMMCH and HJH have attempted to alleviate some pressure by transferring patients to other hospitals from the worse-hit parts of their facilities. They have also opted to perform some of their theatre operations at sister hospitals, according to the provincial health department.
Johannesburg Water issued a statement on Monday, which explained that, an unplanned interruption at the Randwater Eikenhof pump station on Saturday was fixed but it failed again on Sunday morning, resulting in supply constraints.
The Eikenhof Pump Station has been running at full capacity since Sunday night but because of the size of the water system and the length of time it was incapacitated, the system is still recovering and the water flow is not normalised yet.
“At this stage the affected areas in Roodepoort have recovered with the exception of the Constantia Kloof tower,” said Johannesburg Water. “We can’t start the pumps at this stage as the supply pressure from Rand Water is still too low.”
Reservoirs in the south of the city – including Crown Gardens, Eagles Nest and Lenasia – are recovering, the city said the inflow is still low but it is expected to improve a lot during the low water demand times at night.
“The critical areas are still our Crosby, Brixton and Hurst Hill Reservoirs,” said Johannesburg Water. The inflow is improving even though it remains limited and the city has managed to restart a pump that sends water from Crosby to Brixton Reservoir.
Helen Joseph and Rahima Moosa Hospitals are being supplied with water via water tankers, said Johannesburg Water. The city says it is in the process of increasing the number of water tankers available in order to cover as many affected areas as possible including hospitals and clinics.