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Press Release Archive

Dogs on beaches(sand area) detrimental to Blue Flag status

Dogs on beaches(sand area) detrimental to Blue Flag status
Reissued by George Municipality 22 December 2021

George Municipality wishes to again remind all dog owners that NO dogs are allowed on any of George beaches (SAND Areas) at any time as per the Municipal By-Law (Keeping of Dogs, cats and animals). The municipality has attained Blue Flag status as well as Pilot Blue Flag status for Wilderness Beach, Victoria Bay and Herolds Bay and in order to adhere to the Blue Flag international standards we are strictly enforcing this regulation this festive season.

Dog excrement can contaminate the water and jeopardise the Blue Flag status of our beaches, even if the dog poop is picked up. Dog owners are therefore warned to keep dogs on a leash and off the sandy areas at the beaches. Law Enforcement officers will not hesitate to act against those that do not adhere to this regulation which is clearly identified on our regulation signage boards located at each beach area.

Further to this By-Law no dog or other animal may be in any public street or public space (any open public space the public has access to which falls under the George Municipal jurisdiction for example beachfronts, parks, sport fields and sidewalks) except on a leash and under control. This is unless the animal is in an area designated by the George Municipality as a free-running area. A person is not allowed to walk a dog other than a guide dog, ON A BEACHFRONT i.e not on the sand, a public street, public place, without carrying enough plastic or paper bags or wrappers, to place the excrement of the dog into, in the event of the dog defecating.

Please note that dogs are allowed on the sidewalk areas, (tarred, brick-paved etc.) of beachfronts, if these conditions are adhered to. The beach areas under the control of the George Municipality include Herold’s Bay, Gwaiing River Mouth, Victoria Bay and the Leentjiesklip areas.

The public must also note that By-laws relating to dogs on a street or public place relate to the George Municipal jurisdiction and it might differ from other municipalities. The public is also requested to humanely muzzle and keep dogs under control, which could be considered dangerous, vicious or ferocious. No animals should be left in an unattended and or a closed vehicle or open bakkie in any public street or space. If this by-law is not adhered to, a fine of R1000 will be imposed.

We ask dog owners to familiarise themselves with the Sanparks infographic attached, to see where dogs are allowed on Wilderness Beach.

Short Term Urgent Electrification projects – Twenty-seven homes for Ikapa Electrified

The electrification of 27 homes in Ikapa Informal Settlement have been finalised just before Christmas, as the final of three Short Term Urgent Electrification projects that were prioritized by Council (March 2021) using the available budget for the 2020/21 Financial year. The cost per structure for electrification is between R10 000 – R13 000 which includes a prepaid meter.

Each resident receives their own electrical prepaid meter, in their own name with power supply of 40 amps. In the photograph are from left: Kevin Grunewald, BDE Consulting Engineers; Portfolio Councillor for Electrotechnical Services, Nosicelo Mbete; home owner Ms Nosango Silangulana; Ward Councillor Thembinkosi Lento and Director for Electrotechnical Services, Bongani Mandla.

What does Blue Flag mean?

The Blue Flag is one of the most recognizable beach flags in the world and equates to the confirmation of a clean coastline and transparent ocean water. Raising the Blue Flag means offering a higher level of standard when it comes to beach and saltwater quality. Wilderness beach is one of 48 locations in South Africa that has achieved Blue Flag Status for the 2021/22 season.

George Municipality sees this award as a feather in its tourism cap, as the Blue Flag is regarded by the World Tourism Organisation as the most coveted and respected international award that could be bestowed on top beaches. Blue Flag standards are only enforced at the participating beach’s stated season, which varies from just one month of a year to the full 12 months. The status is awarded one season at a time and municipality must apply annually to renew the status of their beaches. The Blue Flag reviewing panel reserves the right to accept or withdraw membership should the qualifying criteria not be fulfilled and impromptu inspections are carried out during the festive season with no prior warning.

To achieve Blue Flag status, 33 main criteria have to be met, including:

  • Compliance with Blue Flag criteria
  • Information relating to local eco-systems
  • Environmental Management of beaches
  • Beach facilities such as parking, access points, public facilities, cleanliness
  • Access for the physically disabled.
  • Safety services provided on the beaches and enforcing of regulations such as no alcohol, no dogs etc.

The Blue Flag international award focuses on the environmental management of coastlines and coastal waters that aims to promote tourism and development, but is also a symbol for beach quality. WESSA rates Blue Flag status as one of the world’s most acknowledged eco-labels awarded to beaches, marinas, and sustainable boating tourism operators. The programme provides an excellent international standard for municipalities and tour operators to strive toward.  Sites flying the Blue Flag are showing their commitment to conserving the fragile marine and coastal environment, raising environmental awareness and increasing sound environmental practices.

Wilderness beach is managed as a collaborative effort by George Municipality with key stakeholders including South African National Parks,  National Sea Rescue Institute, and GRDM. Victoria Bay and Herold’s Bay this year both gained Pilot status following application by the George Municipality.

Acting Municipal Manager for George, Dr Michele Gratz said that Blue Flag status offered many benefits besides improved tourism facilities and that the resources allocated to maintaining daily compliance play an important role in job creation. George Municipality has established a festive monitoring committee which meets daily to review facilities, safety and cleanliness at all of the beaches across George, including Wilderness Salina’s, Wilderness Leentjiesklip, Herolds Bay, Victoria Bay and Gwaing River Mouth beach.

The Blue Flag season runs from 1 December 2021 to 31 January 2022. Compliance includes high standards of water quality monitoring, public safety and lifeguard services, and well-maintained coastal amenities. South Africa has participated in the Blue Flag programme since 2001.

George Municipality Law Enforcement sends stern warning to beachgoers by showing them away from beach areas with liquor to the value of R10 000 in one day

Issued by George Municipality 20 December 2021 for immediate release

Captions: Some of the liquor that beachgoers tried to smuggle onto the beach areas.

George Municipality has sent a stern warning to beachgoers yesterday by sending them away from beach areas with liquor to the value of more than R10 000, which people still tried to bring onto beaches, despite the ZERO TOLERANCE OF ALCOHOL ON OUR BEACHES.

According to Richard von Willingh, Law Enforcement Chief, people tried to bring a total of 332.3 litres of various kinds of liquor to the approximate value of R10 129 onto the beaches yesterday, Sunday, 19 December 2021. Alcohol would have been confiscated if the offenders did not leave the beach area.

Beachgoers should take note that NO DRINKING is allowed at beaches, any open space, car parks, in or outside vehicles at these places. Law Enforcement has NO TOLERANCE for any person who wants to enter the beach areas under the influence of alcohol, try to enter the beaches with liquor, or use alcohol at beaches.

Von Willingh said, “We will not hesitate to prosecute people and or confiscate their liquor if they do not comply with the municipal by-laws.”

George Municipality will strictly enforce its no alcohol allowed on our beaches policy. The Municipality appointed 30 Beach Monitors to assist with beach patrols and bag searches.

We encourage all beachgoers to assist our officials in ensuring that their day at the beach is a safe and pleasant experience. Neighbourhood Watches, Community Police Forums, George Traffic Services, Provincial Traffic Services as well as SAPS also work closely with the Municipality with regards to Community Safety.

Alcohol is strictly prohibited on all beach areas under the control of the George Municipality which include Herold’s Bay, Gwaiing River Mouth, Victoria Bay, Wilderness, and Leentjiesklip areas.

Beachgoers should take note that NO DRINKING is allowed at beaches, any open space, car parks, in or outside vehicles at these places. Law Enforcement has NO TOLERANCE for any person who wants to enter the beach areas under the influence of alcohol, try to enter the beaches with liquor, or use alcohol at beaches.

Von Willingh said, “We will not hesitate to prosecute people and or confiscate their liquor if they do not comply with the municipal by-laws.”

George Municipality will strictly enforce its no alcohol allowed on our beaches policy. The Municipality appointed 30 Beach Monitors to assist with beach patrols and bag searches.

We encourage all beachgoers to assist our officials in ensuring that their day at the beach is a safe and pleasant experience. Neighbourhood Watches, Community Police Forums, George Traffic Services, Provincial Traffic Services as well as SAPS also work closely with the Municipality with regards to Community Safety.

Alcohol is strictly prohibited on all beach areas under the control of the George Municipality which include Herold’s Bay, Gwaiing River Mouth, Victoria Bay, Wilderness, and Leentjiesklip areas.

Dogs on beaches(sand area) detrimental to Blue Flag status

Dogs on beaches(sand area) detrimental to Blue Flag status
Issued by George Municipality 20 December 2021
George Municipality wishes to inform all dog owners that for us to adhere to the Blue Flag international standards at all our beaches, it is imperative to enforce strict rules of NO DOGS ON BEACHES (SAND AREAS) that is in line with the Municipality’s By-law, Keeping of dogs, cats and animals.


Dog excrement can contaminate the water and jeopardise the Blue Flag status of our beaches-even if the dog poop is picked up.
Dog owners are therefore warned to keep dogs on a leash and off the sandy areas at the beaches. Law Enforcement officers will not hesitate to act against those that do not adhere to the By-law.


Wilderness Beach has full Blue Flag status and Victoria Bay and Herold’s Bay both gained Pilot status. Blue Flag is an international coastal management programme that accredits beaches that meet standards of excellence in water quality, environmental management, environmental education and information as well as safety and services. In South Africa the programme is implemented by the Wildlife Environmental Society of South Africa (WESSA).


Blue Flag beaches promote tourism which stimulates the economy and assist with job creation. The status offers many benefits including improved tourism facilities, enhanced management of coastal ecosystems, increased awareness of the coast and capacity building of coastal municipalities as well as carrying significant international merit.


Further to this By-Law no dog or other animal may be in any public street or public space (any open public space the public has access to which falls under the George Municipal jurisdiction for example beachfronts, parks, sport fields and sidewalks) except on a leash and under control. This is unless the animal is in an area designated by the George Municipality as a free-running area. A person is not allowed to walk a dog other than a guide dog, ON A BEACHFRONT, a public street, public place, without carrying enough plastic or paper bags or wrappers, to place the excrement of the dog into, in the event of the dog defecating.

Please note that dogs are allowed on the sidewalk areas, (tarred, brick-paved etc.) of beachfronts, if these conditions are adhered to. The beach areas under the control of the George Municipality includes Herold’s Bay, Gwaiing River Mouth, Victoria Bay and the Leentjiesklip areas.

The public must also note that By-laws relating to dogs on a street or public place relate to the George Municipal jurisdiction and it might differ from other municipalities. The public is also requested to humanely muzzle and keep dogs under control, which could be considered dangerous, vicious or ferocious. No animals should be left in an unattended and or a closed vehicle or open bakkie in any public street or space. If this by-law is not adhered to, a fine of R1000 will be imposed.

Mr Richard von Willingh, Manager Law Enforcement at George Municipality, requests that animal owners leaving on vacation have their animals cared for by a reliable person or at an animal boarding facility such as kennels or catteries.


We ask dog owners to familiarise themselves with a map of Sanparks attached, to see where dogs are allowed on beaches and where not.

‘PAVEMENT PERMITS’ FOR RESTAURANTS OVER FESTIVE SEASON

Issued by George Municipality 17 December 2021 for immediate release

George Municipality is allowing restaurants to apply for ‘pavement permits’ over the festive season, to assist restaurants to inch closer to their original capacities as they have to implement social distancing measures due to COVID-19.

A ‘pavement permit’ will provide restaurants with additional floor space to place their tables, taking Covid-19 amended level 1 regulations into account. These permits will be applicable until 16 January 2022.

If your establishment would like to apply for this permit, download the application form here https://www.george.gov.za/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/Encroachment-application-151221-1.pdf and submit it together with the required documents to Lauren Waring, Director of Planning and Development: lwaring@george.gov.za.  Any additional queries can be directed to the same email address.

Appreciation Service held for representatives of Nutritional Centres

Issued by George Municipality on 15 December 2021 for immediate release

The George Municipality Community Development Section hosted an Appreciation Service dedicated to the Nutritional Centre representatives on Tuesday, 14 December.

There are currently 125 active centres across the George Municipal area.

The ceremony took on a formal programme and certificates of appreciation were handed over to all the representatives of the nutritional centres. Candles were lit during the programme in memorium of those who lost their lives in the past two years. The Executive Deputy Mayor of George, Cllr Raybin Figland, did the official address at the event and thanked all the good Samaritans from the centres for all their hard work and dedication to their communities.


Apostle Charlotte Roberts, the Guest Speaker at the event, shared a powerful motivational message with the attendees. After the formalities, the ladies and gents were treated to a cooked meal with dessert. The meals were sponsored by EBK Distributors who regards this as their part in giving back to the community that they are a part of. The function was well attended and appreciated by all who were present.

The newly appointed Portfolio Councillor for Community Development, Cllr Brendon Adams, did the official opening and welcoming at the event.

Nutrition 1 and 2: The representatives from the 125 Nutritional Centres across George attended an Appreciation Service at Lawaaikamp Community Hall. Here they are proudly showing off their appreciation certificates for a job well done.

Festive Lights switched on at Unity Park

Festive Lights switched on at Unity Park

Mayor Leon van Wyk switched on the Festive Lights at Unity Park tonight. With him him are the Electrotechnical team that worked tirelessly to get the lights ready during wet and difficult weather conditions the past two weeks. Deputy Mayor of George, Cllr Raybin Figland, more Councillors and Acting Municipal Manager of George, Dr Michele Gratz, supported the mayor at the switch on.


George Municipality wants to bring good cheer and signal the start of our festive season by switching on our Christmas lights. Although no official event was planned for the official switching on of the lights this year, mainly due to COVID restrictions, the lights bring holiday cheer to tourists and residents alike.

George is a holiday town and tourism destination for many and the Mayor of George and Coucil wish everyone a happy and safe festive season. ISSUED BY GEORGE MUNICIPALITY 11 December 2021 at 20h26

ALERT:GEORGE AIRPORT ROAD TO THE N2, NOW OPEN AND SAFE TO USE

ALERT: MR347/404 GEORGE AIRPORT ROAD TO THE N2, NOW OPEN AND SAFE TO USE10 December 2021 at 17h00Issued by Garden Route District Municipality CommunicationsSince last week the Roads and Transport Planning Department of Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM) worked non-stop to repair the MR347/404 Road between the George Airport and the N2 highway.This followed the appearance of a sinkhole that was as a result of the torrential rain that largely impacted infrastructure in George and Oudtshoorn. Consequently, the section of the road from the entrance of Bargain Nursery and Elvis Brew to the entrance of the George Airport, was prioritised and repaired. Executive Manager for Roads and Transport Planning at GRDM, John Daniels, said: “Our Roads team worked non-stop since Wednesday, 1 December 2021, to repair the road. We know that this road gets extremely busy over the festive season as many visitors to our region arrive by plane. Two popular businesses would also have been severely impacted if we didn’t prioritise this project. We also want the experience of those visiting our region be the same as those who already reside here.””The road is now open and safe to use,” Daniels said.

Girls Beach Day with Bianca Buitendag cancelled due to rising Covid-19 numbers

Due to the rise in Covid 19 cases and the physical nature of the Girls Beach Day with Bianca Buitendag, it has been decided with great regret and in the interests of the health and safety of all participants, volunteers and staff, that the “Girls Beach Day with Bianca Buitendag”, on Saturday 11 December 2021, has been cancelled.

George Tourism and local Olympian surfer Bianca Buitendag teamed up earlier this year to host a fun, free community event. However, the nature of the event involved direct, physical contact between participants, volunteers and staff. The Girls Beach Day had little to no economic impact as it was a free event, with no external infrastructure required, and was focused on the local surfing community interacting predominantly with school children. Due to the announcement of the fourth wave, and in consultation with the George Municipality Disaster Management unit and key stakeholders, it was decided in the interests of public safety to cancel the event.

Lauren Waring, Director of Planning and Development at George Municipality, says “We are very disappointed but given the current situation we are grateful to Bianca and the surfing fraternity for taking a cautious approach. Whilst we all want to be able to enjoy our beautiful beaches and outdoors, we must take joint responsibility for ensuring the health of our community “. Buitendag added, “We were really hoping to have a fun and motivational morning with girls of all ages, centred around our amazing beach and surfing culture. We are so disappointed that the event cannot take place but in the current climate, it is unfortunately a known and real risk when planning an event. A special thanks to the Eden Surf Riders for their hard work and contribution. We wish the community of George a safe and festive Christmas season”.

Photos by Ian Thurtell

GO GEORGE schedules and hours during holiday season

Issued 8 December 2021

All GO GEORGE services will continue throughout the holidays, with special provision for shoppers and employees at the Garden Route Mall and Eden Meander shopping centres where extended business hours will be implemented.

Later buses at Garden Route Mall and Eden Meander

On weekdays, from 13 to 31 December, the last two trips of the day on Route 12 Pacaltsdorp – Garden Route Mall will be delayed for 10 minutes to accommodate passengers who will be working until 19:00 during the festive season. The 19:00 trip to Pacaltsdorp will depart at 19:10, and the 19:20 trip at 19:30.

Public holidays

Buses will be running according to the Saturday schedule on 16 December and 1 January. The Sunday schedule will be followed on 25, 26 and 27 December.

Anyone needing assistance with trip planning can phone the GO GEORGE Call Centre on 0800 044 044 – the agents take calls from 05:00 until 20:00, seven days a week, throughout the holiday season as well. 

Covid-19 safety

Passengers are once again reminded to adhere to the simple but effective Covid-19 safety measures required on the bus: wearing a mask covering both the mouth and nose, sanitising or washing of hands, keeping a safe distance where possible, and very importantly: keeping bus windows open for good ventilation.

CAPTION:

Make sure that your face mask covers both your mouth and nose for maximum protection – the virus tends to attach itself to certain cells in the nose.

Afrikaans op volgende bladsy

PERSVRYSTELLING: GO GEORGE-ure en -skedules gedurende vakansieseisoen

Uitgereik 8 Des 2021

Alle GO GEORGE-dienste sal regdeur die vakansie voortgaan, met spesiale voorsiening vir kliënte en werknemers by die Garden Route Mall en Eden Meander-winkelsentrums waar verlengde besigheidsure geïmplementeer sal word.

Later busse by Garden Route Mall en Eden Meander

Op weeksdae, van 13 tot 30 Desember, sal die laaste twee ritte van die dag op Roete 12 Pacaltsdorp – Garden Route Mall met 10 minute uitgestel word om passasiers te akkommodeer wat tot 19:00 werk tydens die feesseisoen. Die 19:00-rit na Pacaltsdorp sal om 19:10 vertrek, en die 19:20-rit om 19:30.

Openbare vakansiedae

Busse sal op 16 Desember en 1 Januarie die Saterdagskedule volg terwyl die Sondagskedule op 25, 26 en 27 Desember sal geld.  

Enigiemand wat hulp benodig met ritbeplanning is welkom om die GO GEORGE-inbelsentrum by 0800 044 044 te skakel – die agente neem oproepe van 05:00 tot 20:00, sewe dae per week, regdeur die vakansieseisoen.

Covid-19-veiligheid

Passasiers word weereens daaraan herinner om te voldoen aan die eenvoudige maar doeltreffende Covid-19-veiligheidsmaatreëls wat op die bus vereis word: die dra van ‘n masker wat beide die mond en neus bedek, ontsmet of was van hande, handhawing van ‘n veilige afstand waar moontlik, en baie belangrik: oop busvensters vir goeie ventilasie.

ONDERSKRIF:

Maak seker dat jou gesigmasker jou mond sowel as jou neus bedek vir maksimum beskerming – die virus is geneig om aan sekere selle in die neus vas te heg.

PRESS RELEASE: GO GEORGE schedules and hours during holiday season

Issued 8 December 2021

All GO GEORGE services will continue throughout the holidays, with special provision for shoppers and employees at the Garden Route Mall and Eden Meander shopping centres where extended business hours will be implemented.

Later buses at Garden Route Mall and Eden Meander

On weekdays, from 13 to 31 December, the last two trips of the day on Route 12 Pacaltsdorp – Garden Route Mall will be delayed for 10 minutes to accommodate passengers who will be working until 19:00 during the festive season. The 19:00 trip to Pacaltsdorp will depart at 19:10, and the 19:20 trip at 19:30.

Public holidays

Buses will be running according to the Saturday schedule on 16 December and 1 January. The Sunday schedule will be followed on 25, 26 and 27 December.

Anyone needing assistance with trip planning can phone the GO GEORGE Call Centre on 0800 044 044 – the agents take calls from 05:00 until 20:00, seven days a week, throughout the holiday season as well. 

Covid-19 safety

Passengers are once again reminded to adhere to the simple but effective Covid-19 safety measures required on the bus: wearing a mask covering both the mouth and nose, sanitising or washing of hands, keeping a safe distance where possible, and very importantly: keeping bus windows open for good ventilation.

CAPTION:

Make sure that your face mask covers both your mouth and nose for maximum protection – the virus tends to attach itself to certain cells in the nose.

Afrikaans op volgende bladsy

PERSVRYSTELLING: GO GEORGE-ure en -skedules gedurende vakansieseisoen

Uitgereik 8 Des 2021

Alle GO GEORGE-dienste sal regdeur die vakansie voortgaan, met spesiale voorsiening vir kliënte en werknemers by die Garden Route Mall en Eden Meander-winkelsentrums waar verlengde besigheidsure geïmplementeer sal word.

Later busse by Garden Route Mall en Eden Meander

Op weeksdae, van 13 tot 30 Desember, sal die laaste twee ritte van die dag op Roete 12 Pacaltsdorp – Garden Route Mall met 10 minute uitgestel word om passasiers te akkommodeer wat tot 19:00 werk tydens die feesseisoen. Die 19:00-rit na Pacaltsdorp sal om 19:10 vertrek, en die 19:20-rit om 19:30.

Openbare vakansiedae

Busse sal op 16 Desember en 1 Januarie die Saterdagskedule volg terwyl die Sondagskedule op 25, 26 en 27 Desember sal geld.  

Enigiemand wat hulp benodig met ritbeplanning is welkom om die GO GEORGE-inbelsentrum by 0800 044 044 te skakel – die agente neem oproepe van 05:00 tot 20:00, sewe dae per week, regdeur die vakansieseisoen.

Covid-19-veiligheid

Passasiers word weereens daaraan herinner om te voldoen aan die eenvoudige maar doeltreffende Covid-19-veiligheidsmaatreëls wat op die bus vereis word: die dra van ‘n masker wat beide die mond en neus bedek, ontsmet of was van hande, handhawing van ‘n veilige afstand waar moontlik, en baie belangrik: oop busvensters vir goeie ventilasie.

ONDERSKRIF:

Maak seker dat jou gesigmasker jou mond sowel as jou neus bedek vir maksimum beskerming – die virus is geneig om aan sekere selle in die neus vas te heg.

10 Point Holiday Check for your car!

Just as we all need our health checks annually, it is a good idea to have your vehicle checked before departing on a long trip. The George Municipal Vehicle Testing Station will be open on 13th (10h00 -15h30, 14th and 15th December (08h30 -15h30), and again 3rd, 4th and 5th January 2022 (08h30 -15h30), for a free 10 Point Check of your vehicle.

Bring your vehicle to our VTS on the corner of Hibernia Street on the dates listed above and please note the policy will be first come first served.


The 10 Point inspection includes:

  • Identification of vehicle
  • Lights
  • Equipment and Body structure
  • Braking Systems 
  • Wheels and Tyres
  • Suspension and undercarriage 
  • Steering 
  • Oil leaks
  • Exhaust System
  • Transmission 

The full inspection will take approximately 10 minutes and you will be free to go with a clear bill of health – or know that something needs to be repaired before you leave for that long drive.

Safety is our first priority – make use of the opportunity to ensure you and your family travel safely this festive season.

SAFETY TIPS

Check that vehicle is roadworthy before you start your journey 

Carry the necessary equipment and tools to assist you on the road in case of breakdown 

Have enough rest before you start your journey and take a rest every 2 hours 

Adhere to all road signs and rules of the road

Maintain a safe following distance

Adhere to and stay within the speed limits

Follow instructions that are given by Law enforcement or Traffic Officials

No overloading of passengers because it affects the braking system of the vehicle

Have the necessary contact numbers in case of emergency

Be patient towards other road users 

Mayoral Festive Message 2021

The year 2021 has provided further challenges for all of us.

The Covid-19 pandemic has had an impact on all our lives, with many citizens being affected through illness along with families and friends losing loved ones. The economy has been harmed with some sectors suffering more than others. Jobs and employment opportunities have been lost leaving many families destitute. The Municipality has within its means, provided assistance to vulnerable residents experiencing hunger, the loss of dignity and increased levels of concern about safety. As at the end of November we are faced with risks about a further wave of the pandemic. We therefore need to continue to take the necessary precautions to remain safe. 

During 2021 various actions have been taken within the Municipality to improve levels of service delivery, improve management capacity and to attend to infrastructure maintenance and improvements in capacity to allow for increases in economic activity.

As we approach our traditional holiday season, we have taken note of the numerous positive signals where sectors of the economy are embarking on efforts to rebuild the economic activity. It is therefore important that we all assist our broader tourism sector in the recovery phase.

We wish to thank all our employees and our citizens for all their sacrifices and patience during this year as we learn more about the “new normal” behavioural patterns. We also welcome all holidaymakers and visitors to George over the summer holiday season and wish them excellent weather, safety (on the roads and while swimming) and good times enjoyed with friends and family.

We should all remember to adhere to the health and safety guidelines during the holiday season. We are all together as we face these challenges. Where possible, we should assist those less fortunate than ourselves. We send good wishes to all residents and visitors.

GO GEORGE commemorates 7 years of high-tech service to the George community

Issued 7 Dec 2021

Seven years ago, the first scheduled buses of George’s own public bus service departed from the York Street depot at 05:00 on 8 December 2014, rolling out Phase 1 of the George Integrated Public Transport Network (GIPTN).

Today, 24 of the planned routes have already been activated and are covering a network of 142 km, crisscrossing the streets of George, enabling residents to travel to work, school, medical and community services and shops anywhere in town.

“Although there have been many challenges along the way and we would have loved to have made further progress with more roll-outs to date, we are very proud of what we have achieved thus far,” says GO GEORGE Manager, James Robb. “Apart from the dedicated and hard-working workforce behind the bus service, the advanced level of technology keeping this intricate system running, is constantly developing and being customised to suit the needs of a top-class, scheduled public bus service such as GO GEORGE.”

Intelligent Transport System

The GIPTN has an Intelligent Transport System (ITS) that allows real-time remote monitoring of route and timetable adherence as well as several other operational performance indicators such as speeding, harsh braking and acceleration, and emergency calls from drivers. The system provides alerts in respect of deviations from any of the prescribed parameters and keeps an ongoing record of the mileage, idling times, standing times, etc. of all vehicles.

In parallel with vehicle tracking, buses are also fitted with on-vehicle cameras, linked to a tracking device, that allow the observation of the bus interior and “road ahead” views.

The ITS monitoring facility is based in the GIPTN control centre, in the same space as the GO GEORGE Call Centre, allowing real-time feedback to passengers phoning in, as well as the functionality to track older footage to investigate complaints. As the system is reliant on constant connectivity, there are, however, periods of frustration when service cannot be provided at the preferred level and speed, as is the case with many local businesses having to deal with unstable internet connection.

Vandalism

“A very sad reality of our operations is the constant vandalising of our buses and infrastructure,” says Robb. “The on-board cameras are definitely helpful in this regard and should act as deterrent for this kind of behaviour, but still, we do not see the decline one would expect. We are rolling out a focused anti-vandalism campaign this month and are aiming to change people’s attitude and get communities’ direct involvement in the new year, to help us stop vandalism.”

Automated Fare Collection

The GO GEORGE Automated Fare Collection (AFC) system replaced the interim paper ticket late in 2018. With over three years of operations, the AFC System has created a cashless tap-on solution that allows passengers to travel conveniently on the GO GEORGE bus service using their personal Smart Card.

Linked to the ITS, the AFC system is providing valuable insights that are being used to improve the quality of the GO GEORGE service for the commuters. Some of these insights include:

  • A better understanding of passenger travelling patterns to improve planning and ensure that bus scheduling decisions align with passenger demand data.
  • A more data-driven improvement of the Smart Card products sold using the AFC system to ensure that it meets the needs of passengers.
  • Development of strategic top-up vendor and mobile kiosk deployment to areas where boarding is high and trip top-up facilities low.

Digital fuel management system

At the George Link depot, three on-site diesel tanks with a combined capacity of 69 000 litres have been installed in 2018.

John Heathcote, George Link Operational Manager, says the saving to the Municipality by refuelling on site instead of driving several kilometres to do so at an outside vendor at the end of every day, is about R90 000 per month.

“We now fill up on site at the end of each shift. Managing the stock and consumption through a digital system allows me to be on top of everything from anywhere in the country through an application on my smartphone or laptop computer. Downloading the data in spreadsheet format, I can check each refill by bus fleet number, driver’s and fuel attendant’s identity and the amount of fuel that was taken in, from which pump,” Heathcote says.

This constant eye on the fuel consumption of each vehicle as well as on the driver handling the bus on that shift, also alerts management to excessive consumption which might call for a mechanical check-up or a look into the driver’s skills in terms of fuel economy.

People remain the core of the service

“Even though all the technological aids sound impressive, we are acutely aware that at the core of our services lie the attitude, dedication and perseverance of an amazing team of humans,” says Robb.

“There is often a perception that the system is designed and run by people who are far removed from the ground but in reality, every one of our team members spend many hours in the field every week, observing passenger behaviour and movement out on routes. This includes the entire management team – we are constantly reviewing data from reports, keeping an eye on complaints or requests coming through.

“There’s a drive and an effort across the organisation not to plan routes and schedules on a piece of paper, but to assess and walk things out on site, to touch and feel and see what the passenger would. We may not get it right all the time, but every challenge makes us want to try harder and do better to serve our community.”

CAPTION:

GO GEORGE and George Link management and staff gathered at the George Transport Hub in high spirits to sing “Happy birthday, GO GEORGE!”

GO GEORGE herdenk 7 jaar van hoë-tegnologie diens aan die George-gemeenskap

Uitgereik 7 Des 2021

Sewe jaar gelede het die eerste geskeduleerde busse van George se eie openbare busdiens op 8 Desember 2014 om 05:00 uit die Yorkstraat-depot vertrek en Fase 1 van die George Geïntegreerde Openbare Vervoernetwerk (GIPTN) uitgerol.

Vandag is 24 van die beplande roetes reeds geaktiveer en dek dit ‘n netwerk van 142 km wat die strate van George deurkruis en inwoners in staat stel om werk en skool toe as ook na mediese- en gemeenskapsdienste en winkels oral in die dorp te ry.

“Hoewel daar baie uitdagings langs die pad was en ons baie graag verder gevorderd sou wou wees, met meer fases uitgerol, is ons is baie trots op wat ons tot dusver bereik het,” sê GO GEORGE-bestuurder, James Robb. “Afgesien van die toegewyde en hardwerkende arbeidsmag agter die busdiens, word die gevorderde vlak van tegnologie wat hierdie ingewikkelde stelsel aan die gang hou, voortdurend ontwikkel en aangepas om aan die behoeftes van ‘n topklas, geskeduleerde openbare busdiens soos GO GEORGE te voldoen.”

Intelligente vervoerstelsel

Die GIPTN het ‘n Intelligente Vervoerstelsel (ITS) wat intydse afstandsmonitering van roete- en roosternakoming moontlik maak, asook verskeie ander operasionele gedragsaanwysers soos spoed, harde rem en -versnelling, en noodoproepe van bestuurders. Die stelsel vertoon waarskuwings ten opsigte van afwykings van enige van die voorgeskrewe grense en hou ‘n deurlopende rekord van die kilometers, luiertye, wagtye, ensovoorts van alle voertuie.

Samelopend met voertuigopsporing, is busse ook toegerus met kameras op die voertuie wat gekoppel is aan ‘n opsporingstoestel wat die waarneming van die binnekant van die bus en die pad voor die bus moontlik maak.

Die ITS-moniteringsfasiliteit is gebaseer in die GIPTN-beheersentrum, in dieselfde ruimte as die GO GEORGE-inbelsentrum wat intydse terugvoering aan inbellers kan bied, asook die funksionaliteit om ouer beeldmateriaal op te spoor om klagtes te ondersoek. Aangesien die stelsel afhanklik is van konstante konnektiwiteit, is daar egter periodes van frustrasie wanneer diens nie op die verkose vlak en teen die nodige spoed verskaf kan word nie, soos die geval is met baie plaaslike besighede wat onstabiele internetverbinding moet hanteer.

Vandalisme

“‘n Baie hartseer werklikheid van ons bedrywighede is die konstante vandalisering van ons busse en infrastruktuur,” sê Robb. “Die kameras aan boord is beslis nuttig in hierdie verband en moet as afskrikmiddel vir hierdie soort gedrag dien, maar ons sien steeds nie die afname wat ‘n mens sou verwag nie. Ons ontplooi vandeesmaand ‘n gefokusde anti-vandalisme-veldtog en mik om mense se houding te verander en in die nuwe jaar gemeenskappe se direkte betrokkenheid te kry om ons te help om vandalisme te stop.”

Outomatiese tariefinvordering

Die outomatiese GO GEORGE-tariefinvorderingstelsel het die tussentydse papierkaartjie laat in 2018 vervang. Met meer as drie jaar in bedryf het die stelsel ‘n kontantlose skanderingsfunksie ontwikkel wat passasiers toelaat om die GO GEORGE-busdiens gerieflik te gebruik deur hul persoonlike Slimkaart te skandeer.

Gekoppel aan die ITS, bied hierdie stelsel waardevolle insigte wat gebruik word om die gehalte van die GO GEORGE-diens vir die passasiers te verbeter. Sommige van hierdie insigte sluit in:

  • ‘n Beter begrip van passasiers se reispatrone om beplanning te verbeter en te verseker dat busskeduleringsbesluite in lyn is met passasiersaanvraag.
  • ‘n Meer datagedrewe verbetering van die Slimkaartprodukte met behulp van die stelsel om te verseker dat dit voldoen aan die behoeftes van passasiers.
  • Ontwikkeling van strategiese ontplooiing van herlaaipunte en mobiele kiosks na gebiede waar opklimsyfers hoog is, en herlaaifasiliteite laag.

Digitale brandstofbestuurstelsel

George Link, die voertuigbedrysmaatskappy, het in 2018 drie dieseltenks met ‘n gesamentlike kapasiteit van 69 000 liter by die busdepot laat installeer.

John Heathcote, bedryfsbestuurder van George Link, sê die besparing aan die munisipaliteit deur op die perseel te hervul in plaas daarvan om etlike kilometers te ry om dit aan die einde van elke dag by ‘n buiteverkoper te doen, is sowat R90 000 per maand.

“Ons hervul nou op die terrein aan die einde van elke skof. Die bestuur van die voorraad en brandstofverbruik deur ‘n digitale stelsel laat my toe om deur ‘n toepassing op my slimfoon of skootrekenaar op hoogte van alles te bly vanaf enige plek in die land. Deur die data in sigbladformaat af te laai, kan ek elke hervulling nagaan deur middel van die busvlootnommer, die drywer en brandstofjoggie se identiteit, en die hoeveelheid brandstof wat ingeneem is, en uit watter pomp,” sê Heathcote.

Hierdie konstante oog op die brandstofverbruik van elke voertuig sowel as op die bestuurder wat die bus op daardie skof hanteer, waarsku ook die bestuur van oormatige verbruik wat ‘n meganiese ondersoek of die nagaan van die bestuurder se vaardighede in terme van brandstofekonomie kan vereis.

“Hoewel al die tegnologiese hulpmiddels indrukwekkend klink, is ons deeglik bewus daarvan dat die kern van ons diens in die houding, toewyding en deursettingsvermoë van ‘n ongelooflike span mense lê,” sê Robb.

“Daar is dikwels ‘n persepsie dat die stelsel ontwerp en bestuur word deur mense wat ver van grondvlak verwyder is, maar in werklikheid spandeer elkeen van ons spanlede elke week baie ure in die veld met waarneming van passasiersgedrag en beweging op roetes. Dit sluit die hele bestuurspan in – ons hou voortdurend data van verslae dop, asook klagtes of versoeke wat deurkom.

“Daar is ‘n dryfkrag en ‘n poging regoor die organisasie om nie roetes en skedules op ‘n stuk papier te beplan nie, maar om dinge op die terrein te evalueer en uit te tree, aan te raak en te voel en te sien wat die passasier sou doen. Ons kry dit dalk nie die hele tyd reg nie, maar elke uitdaging maak dat ons harder wil probeer en beter wil doen om ons gemeenskap te dien.”

ONDERSKRIF:

GO GEORGE- en George Link-bestuurslede en personeel het in vrolike luim by die George-vervoerkern (Transport Hub) bymekaargekom om ‘n verjaarsdagliedjie vir GO GEORGE te sing.

Blue flag hoisted today!

Blue flag hoisted today!

Issued George Municipality, 8 December 2021

George Municipality is proud to announce the blue flag was hoisted today at Wilderness Beach, and a pilot blue flag at Herold’s Bay. Wilderness Beach has full Blue Flag status and Victoria Bay and Herold’s Bay both gained Pilot status.

Blue Flag is an international coastal management programme that accredits beaches that meet standards of excellence in water quality, environmental management, environmental education and information as well as safety and services. In South Africa the programme is implemented by the Wildlife Environmental Society of South Africa (WESSA).Following heavy rains on Monday, 6 December 2021 and flash floods of Monday 22nd November our cleansing teams have been working non-stop every day to remove debris from the beaches. The teams are still working at Victoria Bay.Blue Flag status offers many benefits including improved tourism facilities, enhanced management of coastal ecosystems, increased awareness of the coast and capacity building of coastal municipalities as well as carrying significant international merit. The Blue Flag season runs from 1 December 2021 to 31 January 2022. Compliance includes high standards of water quality monitoring, public safety and lifeguard services, and well-maintained coastal amenities. South Africa has participated in the Blue Flag programme since 2001.

Captions: Selenas: Acting Supervisor at Wilderness Beach, Virgil Carolus (far right) with our EPWP employees this morning (8 December 2021) with the hoisted Blue flag at Wilderness Beach.Caption

John Magwa Supervisor in Herold’s Bay with the pilot Blue Flag at the beach.

Cleaning crews from George Municipality Community Services cleaned the beach at Wilderness and Leentjiesklip until late yesterday. Teams are still clearing Victoria Bay beach of debris after heavy rainfall on Monday to be able to hoist the pilot Blue Flag at the beach.

George Municipality celebrates International Day of Persons with Disabilities, HIV/Aids Day and 16 Days of Activism in Herold

Issued by George Municipality 8 December 2021 for immediate release

George Municipality Gender and Disability subsection hosted a joint event in Herold last week to celebrate International Day of Persons with Disabilities, HIV/Aids Day and 16 Days of Activism. The subsection joined with the Department of Health as well as the local communities to have a one day event.

The department of Health did HIV testing, vaccinations, eye testing and prostate cancer testing on the day. The George Municipality would also like to thank the local VGK church, Franken Primary School and the farmers in the area  who greatly assisted in the event and made sure the event is a success. The HIV/Aids subsection of George Municipality played educational games with the children in the community and did face painting with them to make the day more enjoyable.

16 Days of Activism for No Violence against Women and Children Campaign (16 Days Campaign) is a United Nations campaign which takes place annually from 25 November (International Day of No Violence against Women) to 10 December (International Human Rights Day). Other key commemorative days during this period include World Aids Day on the 1st of December and the International Day for Persons with Disabilities, on 3 December of every year.

Her1: Speaker of George Council, Cllr Sean Snyman and Ejustley Boshoff, Coordinator of the Gender and Disability subsection, Community Services lighting a candle in Herold in remembrance of all that passed away due to abuse and HIV-related illnesses.

Her 2: Ejustley Boshoff, Coordinator of the Gender and Disability subsection, Community Services, draws a funny face with face paint on a child’s face at the event in Herold.

Her 3: Officials from George Municipality get the children ready for games at the event.

Heading: George Municipality celebrates International Day of Persons with Disabilities, HIV/Aids Day and 16 Days of Activism in Herold

Issued by George Municipality 8 December 2021 for immediate release

George Municipality Gender and Disability subsection hosted a joint event in Herold last week to celebrate International Day of Persons with Disabilities, HIV/Aids Day and 16 Days of Activism. The subsection joined with the Department of Health as well as the local communities to have a one day event.

The department of Health did HIV testing, vaccinations, eye testing and prostate cancer testing on the day. The George Municipality would also like to thank the local VGK church, Franken Primary School and the farmers in the area  who greatly assisted in the event and made sure the event is a success. The HIV/Aids subsection of George Municipality played educational games with the children in the community and did face painting with them to make the day more enjoyable.

16 Days of Activism for No Violence against Women and Children Campaign (16 Days Campaign) is a United Nations campaign which takes place annually from 25 November (International Day of No Violence against Women) to 10 December (International Human Rights Day). Other key commemorative days during this period include World Aids Day on the 1st of December and the International Day for Persons with Disabilities, on 3 December of every year.

Her1: Speaker of George Council, Cllr Sean Snyman and Ejustley Boshoff, Coordinator of the Gender and Disability subsection, Community Services lighting a candle in Herold in remembrance of all that passed away due to abuse and HIV-related illnesses.

Her 2: Ejustley Boshoff, Coordinator of the Gender and Disability subsection, Community Services, draws a funny face with face paint on a child’s face at the event in Herold.

Her 3: Officials from George Municipality get the children ready for games at the event.

Festive lights bring some festive cheer


George Municipality in welcoming tourists to George, and as a signal to the start of our festive season will be putting up and switching on our Christmas lights soon.   Although no official event is planned for the official switching on of the lights this year, mainly due to COVID restrictions, the lights bring holiday cheer to tourists and resident alike, and our teams are working on having the lights fully operational by Friday. Executive Mayor Leon Van Wyk will switch lights on at Unity Park, Saturday, 11 December at 20h00.

For those wondering about loadshedding and energy saving, please be reminded that loadshedding is essentially Eskom’s inability to provide reliable electricity. George Municipality has implemented a number of energy-saving initiatives, including the commissioning of the newly built PV Plant at the Main Municipal Building, as well as the conversion of a large part of George’s streetlights and traffic lights to LED. All municipal buildings have been converted to energy saving lights.

George is a holiday town and tourism destination for many, the switching on of festive lights plays a part in celebrating unity, joy and are a symbol of life and happiness.  They are also a beloved attraction of visitors to George, who often make a special family trip to view the lights in the different areas of George and the now famous Denneoord home displays.  We have noticed that more communities are joining in on this practice, so if you want to show off your display this year, please list your property with George Tourism by sending an e-mail to info@visitgeorge.co.za and they will put you on the viewing list.

Gwaiing Landfill site access control improvements

Visitors to the Gwaiing Landfill site will be pleasantly surprised at the number of changes that have taken place over the past few months. In August this year stricter access control was implemented to address safety concerns and ten Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) workers were employed to assist around the site and to address safety concerns.

ACCESS CONTROL IMPROVED
All vehicles now use the access gate for the refuse transfer station, and must go over the weighbridge for weighing and then proceed via the 2nd gate inside the transfer station, towards the Gwaiing landfill site. Every vehicle entering the facility is then recorded and weighed when it enters, and when it exits. This system enables the municipality to capture correct waste management data and complies with the Provincial Department of Environmental and Development Planning’s requirements.

  • All household and office refuse must be dumped at the refuse transfer station. Only green waste, organic waste, woodcuttings, sawdust, builders rubble, construction waste and soil are permitted on the landfill site.
  • No hazardous waste, light tubing, any vehicle parts, tyres, all asbestos products, e-waste, plastic or cartons  are permitted on the landfill site.
  • No mixed waste: waste must be separated at the source and disposed of at the right waste facility. (Landfill site or refuse transfer station) If you are not sure ask one of the officials on duty at the weighbridge.

FESTIVE SEASON CLOSURES

The municipal garden refuse site and transfer station is closed on 25 and 26th,  December and will be open on New Year’s day for business as usual,weekdays 7am-6pm and Saturdays 7am to 5pm. The site is situated on the R102 (airport road turn-off from York Street).  For queries contact 044 802 2296 or email cplubbe@george.gov.za

The municipality asks the public to assist and work together with the security personnel and municipal officials at these facilities to ensure that all occupational health and safety regulations, COVID -19 protocols and all licensing conditions of the refuse transfer station and Gwaiing landfill site are adhered to.

HOUSEHOLD HAZARDOUS WASTE

To address the disposal of household hazardous waste, the George Municipality will host its second Open Day for the collection of household hazardous waste on 10 December, in the parking lot opposite Outeniqua Stadium, Augusta Street. Open from 08:00  – 15:00, the public to please note all Covid-19 protocols will be observed.

SUITABLE HOUSEHOLD HAZARDOUS WASTE

  • Motor oil, oil filters, brake fluid
    • Used antifreeze
    • Paint, paint thinner, turpentine
    • Pesticides or herbicides
    • Household batteries
    • CRTs, old TVs, miscellaneous electronics
    • Tyres
    • Fluorescent tubes and Globes
    • Household medical waste (needles and old medicine and tablets)

HAZARDOUS WASTE  NOT ACCEPTED

  • Explosives
    • Ammunition
    • Radioactive Materials
    • Controlled Substances

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

  • Bring the items you wish to dispose of in a strong box preferably in their original, labelled containers.
    • Do not EVER mix products together.
    • Be prepared to leave your containers, due to permitting requirements, and the volume of people that may utilise the program.

This is your opportunity to get rid of these items at NO COST and at a convenient, nearby location. For any enquiries, Grace Notshokovu 044 802 2917.

Mayor’s newsletter for George Herald of 2 December 2021

The first week of office for the new Council has required focussing on the damage of the 22 November storm and flooding that coincided with the Council meeting to elect and inaugurate the office bearers. After the conclusion of the meeting the acting municipal manager and I joined the fire chief as night fell on a tour of areas where significant damage occurred.

I thought it might be worthwhile to provide some insight into the “behind the scenes” operations.

On Tuesday and Wednesday we concentrated on the Oewer Street 500mm pipe-burst that was precipitated by the floodwaters engulfing the southern bank of the Kat River. The contractors brought in an excavator to work on the unstable and muddy bank. Part of that repair required bringing in stone and gravel to provide a stable base for the replacement pipe and constructing gabions to protect the newly-laid pipe. At one stage, our new incident command vehicle was placed on the driveway of a private house. This was the base from where some decisions were being made on what tools and equipment had to be sourced to use in the muddy hole to ensure that the pipe jointing could take place smoothly.

With a key pipeline in the network out of use, it also appeared from the continuing water loss on the system that there was another breakage at a location that had not yet been detected. This meant that the lines had to be walked to ultimately locate the break in an isolated wooded area. At the same time there are key roleplayers in the dairy industry who are critically reliant on their daily water supply being delivered within certain pressure tolerances. All available water tankers, including some being rented in or borrowed, were being used to give our residents access to much needed water.

Once the pipelines had been repaired the emphasis shifted to refilling George’s 900 km water pipeline network and the various reservoirs while also removing air-locks. On Friday morning some critical decisions had to be made to balance water availability and pressure in the network to ensure that most areas across George had water without reservoirs running empty. This balancing process required constant adjustment and management over the weekend.

In simple terms George can treat up to 40 Ml (40 million litres) per day with daily usage normally at 30-31 Ml. The outage that we had experienced over Monday through Thursday had depleted our reservoirs and the minimum buffer of 48 hours’ supply. The daily difference between water treated and used is the equivalent of 6 hours’ supply and painstakingly helps to restore the necessary reserves and pressure levels day by day.

Mayor’s newsletter for George Herald of 2 December 2021

The first week of office for the new Council has required focussing on the damage of the 22 November storm and flooding that coincided with the Council meeting to elect and inaugurate the office bearers. After the conclusion of the meeting the acting municipal manager and I joined the fire chief as night fell on a tour of areas where significant damage occurred.

I thought it might be worthwhile to provide some insight into the “behind the scenes” operations.

On Tuesday and Wednesday we concentrated on the Oewer Street 500mm pipe-burst that was precipitated by the floodwaters engulfing the southern bank of the Kat River. The contractors brought in an excavator to work on the unstable and muddy bank. Part of that repair required bringing in stone and gravel to provide a stable base for the replacement pipe and constructing gabions to protect the newly-laid pipe. At one stage, our new incident command vehicle was placed on the driveway of a private house. This was the base from where some decisions were being made on what tools and equipment had to be sourced to use in the muddy hole to ensure that the pipe jointing could take place smoothly.

With a key pipeline in the network out of use, it also appeared from the continuing water loss on the system that there was another breakage at a location that had not yet been detected. This meant that the lines had to be walked to ultimately locate the break in an isolated wooded area. At the same time there are key roleplayers in the dairy industry who are critically reliant on their daily water supply being delivered within certain pressure tolerances. All available water tankers, including some being rented in or borrowed, were being used to give our residents access to much needed water.

Once the pipelines had been repaired the emphasis shifted to refilling George’s 900 km water pipeline network and the various reservoirs while also removing air-locks. On Friday morning some critical decisions had to be made to balance water availability and pressure in the network to ensure that most areas across George had water without reservoirs running empty. This balancing process required constant adjustment and management over the weekend.

In simple terms George can treat up to 40 Ml (40 million litres) per day with daily usage normally at 30-31 Ml. The outage that we had experienced over Monday through Thursday had depleted our reservoirs and the minimum buffer of 48 hours’ supply. The daily difference between water treated and used is the equivalent of 6 hours’ supply and painstakingly helps to restore the necessary reserves and pressure levels day by day.

Blue flag soon to be hoisted at Wilderness Beach

Blue flag soon to be hoisted at Wilderness Beach
Issued George Municipality, 30TH November 2021
Immediate Release

Caption: Proudly holding up the Wilderness Blue Flag are from left Manager Parks and Recreation, Nosidima Vuminda; Acting Municipal Manager, Michele Gratz; Ward 4 Councillor Marlene Barnardt; Deputy Mayor Raybin Figland; Portfolio Councillor Electrotechnical Services, Nosicelo Mbete; Project Coordinator Environmental Services, Grace Notshokuvo and Chief Clerk Environmental Services, Yolanda Mail.

 

Caption 2: Cllr Figland, Cllr Barnardt, Dr Gratz and Ms Vuminda inspect the recently updated public facilities readied for the 2021 festive season and Blue Flag status.

 

Deputy Mayor Raybin Figland, together with Ward Councillor Marlene Barnardt and Acting Municipal Manager Michele Gratz today proudly inspected the facilities at Wilderness beach that have been readied for the hoisting of the Blue Flag for the 2021/22 summer season. Nosidima Vuminda Manager Parks and Recreation for George Municipality accompanied the trio during their site inspection of the public facilities.

 

Wilderness Beach has full Blue Flag status and Victoria Bay and Herold’s Bay both gained Pilot status. Blue Flag is an international coastal management programme that accredits beaches that meet standards of excellence in water quality, environmental management, environmental education and information as well as safety and services. In South Africa the programme is implemented by the Wildlife Environmental Society of South Africa (WESSA).

 

Blue Flag status offers many benefits including improved tourism facilities, enhanced management of coastal ecosystems, increased awareness of the coast and capacity building of coastal municipalities as well as carrying significant international merit.

 

The Blue Flag season runs from 1 December 2021 to 31 January 2022. Compliance includes high standards of water quality monitoring, public safety and lifeguard services, and well-maintained coastal amenities. Following the flash floods of Monday 22nd November large piles of debris is still in process of being removed from the beaches and as such the Blue Flag will officially be hoisted on Friday 3rd December 2021. South Africa has participated in the Blue Flag programme since 2001.