22 December 2023
The South African Weather Service (SAWS) has issued weather warnings as the country prepares for more extreme weather. Johannesburg City Parks and Zoo (JCPZ), the entity responsible for greening in the City of Joburg, is dealing with an unprecedented number of fallen trees in many areas in Joburg as the heavy rains continue. The entity is prioritizing uprooted trees obstructing main routes, trees in residential areas, trees that have fallen onto properties or vehicles, sidewalks and trees that block owners’ driveways and damage boundary walls.

JCPZ’s regional street trees teams and stand-by teams will be speedily dealing with the high number of requests from the public and have added further contingencies due to the worsening weather conditions.

With approximately 3.6 million street trees in the care of JCPZ and an estimate of 10 million trees in private properties, Joburg’s aging tree canopy is reaching its full life expectancy. These trees have become more prone to falling due to their weaker root systems thus more susceptible to being uprooted by strong winds and water-logged soil during the rains.

Older trees carry larger and heavier top branches and with unstable roots, they are more likely to topple over.