4 Jul 2023
The exceptionally good winter rains in southwestern Namibia and northwestern South Africa are causing a blockage of one of the main traffic arteries between the two countries. The N7 trunk road south of the border is closed due to washouts, and the Vioolsdrif / Noordoewer border post has been closed.
The South African National Roads Agency (SANRAL) advised in a media release that the N7 at Vyf Myl Poort about 10 km before Vioolsdrif is closed until further notice due to severe damage (see Gondwana Collection Namibia Facebook post).
Traffic is being diverted widely. Alternative routes are via the border crossings Alexander Bay / Oranjemund on the Atlantic coast, Sendelingsdrif (with ferry service over the Gariep/Oranje), Velloorsdrif / Onseepkans south of Karasburg and Ariamsvlei / Nakop on the main route to Johannesburg.
In the meantime, reports by travellers caused confusion that one could get through on the route (see Facebook group Roads in Namibia). According to the current status of today, however, the N7 and the Vioolsdrif border post are closed.
The D 212 road between Aussenkehr west of the Noordoewer border post and Rosh Pinah, on the other hand, is open again. This was announced by the Roads Authority of Namibia (RA) today. The gravel and sand road runs along the Gariep/Oranje River and was slippery and soggy in some places due to the continuous rain.
Author: Sven-Eric Stender
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