City takes steps to repair access ramp

Beach-goers struggle to make their way to the beach on the access ramp.

After 16 injuries were recorded there, the City of Cape Town will finally be taking action to repair the damaged public assess ramp at Strandfontein Pavillon.

Strandfontein Surf Lifesaving Club coach and executive member, Jenino Masters said they had had 16 incidents which required first aid at the beach since October(“Slipping away”, Plainsman, November 15).

The club and the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) expressed concerns about safety at the Blue Flag beach as thousands of people are expected to flock to the sea over the festive season.

Eddie Andrews, mayoral committee member for area south, said the area was among those which had been scheduled for repairs and maintenance across the 307km of coastline in preparation for the season. However, the City could not confirm when repair work would be done.

Mr Andrews said all along its coastlines, the City of Cape Town was experiencing increased rates of damage to coastal infrastructure as it aged.

“Most of the coastal infrastructure was built in the 1980s or earlier and we are now seeing some of that beginning to break after repeated exposure to wave action and high tides. The coastal environment is very dynamic and hard on man-made structures.

“The access ramp was slowly undermined by continued wave action and high tides and as a result, without an extensive foundation, the concrete eventually cracked and broke,” he said.

Mr Andrews said the City’s coastal engineer was working with the facility manager to prepare a detailed costing and specification to address the problem and to restore the public access point.

“We will be reinstating the public access point. This process has been started and … we intend to try and have the work completed by the start of the school holidays in time for the peak season, if all goes according to plan,” he said.