Port of Durban Closed due to Torrential Rains and Flooding

The port of Durban was closed on Apr 12 after the city faced heavy rains in over six decades that caused flooding and mudslides in various parts of the city. Over 60 have been reported dead, and many more missing.

The port, which is considered a key trade route for South Africa and its landlocked neighbors, had to put all operations at its terminals on hold since Monday night, as confirmed by Transnet SOC Ltd., the country’s state-owned port and rail operator. The firm also mentioned that its Richards Bay ports, along with rail lines in a few parts of the KwaZulu-Natal province, were operating at “limited capacity” due to flooding. Significant routes into the port, including the coastal N2 highway and the N3 route linking Durban to Johannesburg, were also closed because of flood damage.

According to a statement on its website, Maersk has also closed its offices in Durban for the rest of the week while clean-up and recovery operations are in motion. They will remain open for business virtually.

UPDATED APR 21, 2022

As per the latest updates, the Port of Durban is now functional and a backlog of thousands of containers will be cleared within a week’s time.