Lion’s Head reopened on March 1; however after the opening South African National Parks (SANParks) received concerns from visitors around the safety of some of the newly installed infrastructure.

“SANParks echoes these sentiments and we understand the disappointment our hikers may feel. The tender that was awarded for infrastructure maintenance was done in a fair, open and equitable manner whilst complying with all Supply Chain Management guidelines,” said SANParks in a statement.

According to SANParks, the contractor was awarded the tender, met the requirements and commenced work when the trail was closed. “Regrettably, quality control was an on-going challenge and our conservation team inspected work on a daily basis. Corrective measures that needed to be put in place were communicated to the contractor as these issues arose,” read the statement.

With the balance of the work completed to a satisfactory level, namely the footpath rehabilitation, the trail was reopened. An area of concern has been cordoned off until such time a Certificate of Compliance can be issued to verify that the safe working load of the infrastructure  is up to standard. This matter is currently being resolved with the contractor.

SANParks has encouraged hikers to make use of the existing staples and chains, or the trail segment that circumvents the cordoned off infrastructure. Visitors are still able to reach the summit through the spiral trail, which excludes the staples and chains.

“SANParks wishes to inform our stakeholders that we will be taking the necessary steps to rectify this situation. Until such time that we can guarantee safe passage, the newly installed infrastructure will remain closed off and notices will remain in place. We apologise for the inconvenient caused,” concluded the statement.