December 27, 2010. South African authorities have started three relocation of thousands of families affected by the huge gaps that have appeared near their homes near Pretoria.
Argue that land subsidence was caused by a significant flow of groundwater extracted by farms in the area, which led to the collapse of cavities.
About 50 families from informal settlements in Bapsfonteyn were relocated, authorities say. Official representatives report that the area is not suitable for larger settlements.
"The situation is extremely unfavorable, some failures have appeared around this place," — told BBC spokesman Municipality Ekurhuleni, Zweli Dlamini.
He said that the area around the informal settlement was granted the status of "unsafe" because of the possible appearance of failure, which "swallow this piece of land." Increase the risk of ground water, so that the authorities have no choice but to declare an immediate evacuation, he added.
Some failures more than 80 meters in diameter, and disperse throughout the cracks, according to the BBC correspondent in Africa, Martin Plaut. Family agreed to move, in addition they promised a good living conditions. According to the South African News Agency (Sapa), move to be completed by mid-January.
Translation: Antoshkina Anastasia