The adverse weather conditions have led to further damage to Middle Beach which has been declared a potential Blue Flag beach for our area.
Not only has most of the beach sand been washed away, but the retaining wall at the Middle Beach lower car park suffered damage.
The wave action following the high spring tide (with a strong westerly wind) at the end of Aug 2012 resulted in the removal of about 1 metre of sand from the beach and undermined the foundations of the wall and of the two sets of steps leading from the car park down to the beach. Further wave damage from the next spring tide (again with a very strong westerly wind) further undermined the wall, its foundations and the steps.
The wall then started to lean outwards and would have fallen over had not immediate protective action been taken by a team from the Kariega Bushmans Estuary Care.
The wall has been stabilized but the steps are now a hazard and a very real safety threat to any visitor trying to make use of them.
The heavy rainfall on the weekend 19th to 21st October however created further damage to the car park. It is estimated that 160mm of rain fell in a short period of time, which resulted the landward side of the wall being further undermined and eroded a strip of asphalt. Consequently a sinkhole appeared in the car park parallel to the wall. The bulk of the rain water runoff exited through this depression.
It is clear that further action needs to be taken urgently.