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Zandvlei waterbody open to the public <p>The City closed Zandvlei to the public on 25 May 2021 as a precautionary measure following water quality concerns.</p><p>Over the past four months, the City has undertaken continuous water quality testing at various points within the Zandvlei waterbody to track the levels and impact of pollution that entered the vlei.</p><p>During this time the test results showed persistent high levels of faecal coliforms (Escherichia coli) within the waterbody, which indicated an elevated risk to human health. Thus, the Zandvlei remained closed and the public was advised to avoid all contact with the water until the levels are within national recreational water use guidelines. </p><p>Apart from the ecological impact of pollution events, recreational users have suffered because they could not enjoy the natural environment as they used to do. The same applies to those residents who live in properties bordering on the vlei.</p><p>The City can now confirm that the E. coli count has sufficiently improved within the main waterbody, and is within the allowable threshold levels for intermediate contact at various points within the Zandvlei. </p><p>Recreational users are advised that:</p><ul><li><div style="text-align:left;">the city’s urban waterways are generally subject to compromised water quality from various sources and may still pose a risk to their health</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">it is highly recommended that full contact should be avoided, for example, swimming or doing recreational activities where the full body is immersed</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">sampling results are snapshots only of the E. coli counts at a particular time and at a specific sampling point within the larger waterbody. Although the City applies a comprehensive sampling effort to evaluate water quality, it is not a complete reflection of the entire waterbody at all times</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">the current situation is subject to change</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">the Marina da Gama section remains closed to the public as the canals are still showing elevated E.coli counts</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">users should please keep the above in mind when considering using the main waterbody of the Zandvlei for recreational activities where the contact is intermediate</div></li></ul><p>The public is advised that unfortunately, the water quality at Zandvlei remains at risk due to multiple factors.</p><p>The vlei was directly impacted by a number of significant pollution incidents, including failures of the Clifton Road pump station in May and the Keyser River pump station in July. In both cases, the infrastructure had been severely damaged by solid objects in the line. In August, officials discovered an overflowing manhole next to the Keyser River. The manhole’s cover and frame had both been stolen.</p><p>While infrastructure repairs were carried out in good time in each of the incidents, failures will continue to occur for as long as the dumping of foreign objects in the sewer lines and abuse of the sewer system in the broader catchment remains rife.</p><p>The Water and Sanitation Department is investing in measures to prevent the high volumes of dumped materials, like rags and rubble, from entering the pump stations, leading to failure and spillage. The new Retreat low lift pump station and refurbishment of the Retreat high lift pump station will assist in this regard. Extensive engagement has also taken place through the City’s Stormwater and Biodiversity Management branches with the Zandvlei Protected Advisory Action Committee. The support of these organisations is appreciated. </p><p>Much of this sewer pollution can be prevented. We encourage residents to please work with the City, to refrain from dumping objects in the sewer lines and report those who do. The vandalism of pump stations and other sewer infrastructure poses a serious risk to all residents, and our natural environment.  </p><p>The health of Cape Town’s waterbodies is the responsibility of all of us who work and live here. By working together we can improve the water quality and conserve our vleis for current and future generations.</p><p>The City will keep on monitoring the water quality at Zandvlei and keep the public informed. The City is committed to undertaking remedial measures to mitigate the impacts of the recent pollution events. In this regard, the City is investigating the most important remedial measures that need to be undertaken.</p><p>We want to thank the public for their ongoing support, patience and cooperation during the closure. </p><p><br><strong>End</strong></p>2021-09-30T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#f276514c-4fe4-4825-9426-2ae3e34ca4ea;L0|#0f276514c-4fe4-4825-9426-2ae3e34ca4ea|Zandvlei;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb;GP0|#701faa20-450e-444a-a0fd-ec8ec3f57e06;L0|#0701faa20-450e-444a-a0fd-ec8ec3f57e06|water quality10

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