The Durban Floods and Looting


The effects of the Durban floods and looting has been nothing short of devastating to its communities, the economy and the property market.

With the riots having started on the 9th of July 2021 and having lasted well over a week, the damage and cost to the KZN economy was estimated to be R20 billion. Over 400 retail outlets, 1400 ATMs, 40 000 businesses and 50 000 traders suffered looting, vandalism and arson attacks. Close to R2 billion worth of stock was lost and 150 000 jobs were consequently at risk. As a result, a provincial state of disaster was declared.

The KZN floods continued on 11th of April 2022 and continued until 13th of April 2022. Damage to infrastructure and the economy was calculated at around R25 billion. Transport, electricity, water and communication were very limited during this period. Rail and road damage to the Durban port resulted in the accumulation of 9 000 containers at the Durban harbor. Once again, a provincial state of disaster was declared. All this, along with the hundreds of lives lost, shows that there’s still a significant recovery challenge ahead.

  • This is where we come in, Delta Scan came in to assess the damages caused by these horrific floods. For EMS it was identifying safe areas for search and rescue operations to take place. As well as assessing damage to help both private and municipal asset owners in determining damage or loss.

Delta Scan deployed drones equipped with laser scanners and ROGB cameras, as well as thermal cameras to inspect the effected areas to provide a clear way to move forward through the damages. We provided an accurate assessment of the scale of the damage left by the floods and noticed that the media only publicized this devastation through isolated events.

In reality, the full scale of the damages had affected critical routes, services, families and homes over hundreds of kilometers. Although the outcome of the floods was devastating, we felt privileged to have been appointed as the lead inspection team to digitize and investigate the damages caused over this multi-week operation, as well as have the opportunity to help so many of the affected families.

Durban flooding