Durban Beachfront Photos Capture Shocking State of ‘Dirtbin’ Right Now
Yesterday (Wed, 7 September) community activist and humanitarian Pete Graham captured the following photos of his beloved hometown, Durban… KZN’s usually beautiful coastal resort. He captioned it « Dirtbin: A Photo Essay ». Pete pointed out that despite the water being contaminated and too dangerous to swim in, some beaches weren’t even displaying the black […]
Yesterday (Wed, 7 September) community activist and humanitarian Pete Graham captured the following photos of his beloved hometown, Durban… KZN’s usually beautiful coastal resort. He captioned it « Dirtbin: A Photo Essay ».
Pete pointed out that despite the water being contaminated and too dangerous to swim in, some beaches weren’t even displaying the black ball or flag that alerts wannabe-bathers not to venture into the water… and so some people had waded in. Fortunately the concerned Durbanite alerted them to get out immediately.
The water has been contaminated on and off since April. Every time there is a surf CFU reading above 500/100ml the beaches have to be closed. This has been happening more regularly. Heading to the beach for a surf is no longer a sure thing. The devastating KZN floods led to chemical spillages, and now there’s the E.Coli – from sewage in the ocean – which has contaminated waters north and south of Durban too.
Pete told SAPeople it’s not just the swimmers that concern him, but that many local people are « also collecting the sand and seawater for medicinal purposes (but) they are going to get one hell of a shock when they do drink the water. I hope there will be medicinal treatment on hand (because) whilst you cannot die from drinking E.Coli, you most certainly can from the diseases that you can get – gastro and diarrhoea. That’s what killed the woman outside Pinetown, when she drank the contaminated water – and improper medical attention unfortunately. »
Pete’s referring to 38-year-old mother Rashnie Baijnath who died after drinking polluted tap water in the Birchwood area. The eThekwini Municipality confirmed the water did « not meet acceptable standards for human consumption ».
Pete grew up on these beaches. He was a nipper and junior lifeguard at Rocks Nippers « back in the day ». Today he’s concerned with the state of affairs in eThekwini and has a popular community page on Facebook – Pete’s Post – which he formed as a platform to give exposure to things he likes or dislikes (and publicise the work his PBO does).
And when it comes to water and sewage, he knows what he’s talking about. Pete, who is an advisor to ActionSA at a provincial and national level, has a business specialising in rural water purification.
Pete’s Post allows him to be a « mini version of Carte Blanche », focussing on relevant issues affecting local communities, and free to « say things that almost no one else can as I own my business and am not constrained by social media restrictions ». He says there are no second chances.
And for Pete, it’s not about up and moving somewhere else. « I was born and bred in Durban… and I’m not going anywhere! » He believes « together we can make a difference »! Together, we can fix things… Here are Pete’s photos showing what needs fixing right now:
Dirtbin – A Photo Essay by Pete Graham
All Durban beaches are now closed. But there are no lifeguards or the black ball / flag to tell anyone on this beach:
Pete Graham is the Founder and Director of www.singakwaziaid.org.za
Follow Pete’s Post for more relevant issues, and to help fix the problems!
WATCH Marine pollution, Durban, KZN
Three weeks ago, eNCA posted this video, saying: « Another week, another pollution problem along Durban’s coastline. Recently it was south of the city in Isipingo, with dead fish washing up on the shores of the lagoon there. Now there is a problem just north of Durban which is killing fish and closing prime beaches. Added to that there are concerns about the quality of tap water in some parts of Durban. eNCA talks to Desmond D’Sa of the South Durban Community Environment Alliance. »