Sterkfontein Caves temporarily closed for routine stability tests

  • February 11, 2014

The Sterkfontein Caves are closed to the public for routine stability testing

The University of the Witwatersrand and Maropeng a'Afrika Leisure (Pty) Ltd announced today that the Sterkfontein Caves will be closed indefinitely to visitors to allow routine stability tests to be undertaken.

These stability tests are carried out every five years to ensure that the caves are stable enough to accommodate the thousands of people who visit every year. In 2012, over 100 000 people passed through the Sterkfontein Caves. The last routine stability test was undertaken five years ago.

“The safety of our visitors to the cave is our first priority, and it is therefore imperative for us to undertake these routine tests,” says Tony Rubin, managing director of Maropeng a'Afrika Leisure (Pty) Ltd, the company that manages the caves on behalf of the University. “We would like to apologise in advance to the public for any inconvenience caused during this period.

“The Sterkfontein exhibition centre and coffee shop, as well as Maropeng, the official visitor centre of the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site, remain fully operational.”    

Wits University has appointed Nielen van der Merwe, professor of rock engineering, to advise on the tests to be undertaken.

“We will keep the public and the media informed of progress and the re-opening date via www.maropeng.co.za and www.wits.ac.za as well as on Twitter and Facebook,” adds Rubin.

For more information or media interviews contact Tony Rubin on (014) 577-9001 or email tonyr@maropeng.co.za.

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