South African National Parks (SANParks) today announced that they are closely monitoring the path of cyclone Freddy and relying on updates from the South African Weather Service, which has warned that parts of Limpopo and Mpumalanga might be affected. All camps in the Kruger National Park (KNP), with the exception of Biyamiti Bush Camp, are open. However, visitors to facilities that may be affected, like Nyalaland Trails camp, Sirheni, Shimuwini and Bateleur Bush camps, will be informed of the possible pending storm and that they may be asked to evacuate in case the cyclone situation advances.
The Managing Executive of the KNP, Oscar Mthimkhulu, said, “ indications are that parts of the far North of the park might be affected and we have already activated our disaster management plans. Meanwhile, we have been fortunate in the south of the park and used the drying-up time to clear debris from several impassable bridges. The bridge at Lower Sabie Rest Camp is now open, and guests travelling to or from Tshokwane/Satara can safely pass through. The low water bridge over the Sabie River in Skukuza is also open for those travelling to and from the Skukuza Airport,” said Mthimkhulu.
Gravel roads in the south remain closed; it is hoped that the weather will be favourable enough for the road maintenance teams to attend to the closed roads going into the weekend. KNP Protection Services has sanctioned another Open Safari Vehicle operator for driving into a “NO ENTRY” road in full view of other law-abiding tourists despite numerous warnings that have been communicated in the past.
Updates on the KNP will be communicated on social media platforms as soon as they become available.
The latest developments are as follows:
- All Camps except Biyamiti Bush Camp are open (with Nyalaland Trails Camp, Sirheni, Shimuwini and Bateleur Bush Camps on alert).
- The bridge at Lower Sabie is now open for travelling to Tshokwane/Satara.
- The Low water bridge over Sabie River at Skukuza is open for travelling to and from Skukuza Airport.
- Sand River’s low water bridge is not yet open but is being closely monitored.