File Picture: Bongani Mbatha /African News Agency (ANA)
File Picture: Bongani Mbatha /African News Agency (ANA)

KZN braces for weekend of heavy rains

By Sakhiseni Nxumalo Time of article published Jan 22, 2021

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Durban - Heavy rains that may result in localised flooding has been forecast in some parts of KwaZulu-Natal over the weekend.

According to the South African Weather Service (SAWS), the heavy rains were expected as a result of tropical storm Eloise moving across Mozambique.

SAWS said that Eloise was situated over the northern parts of Madagascar, and was expected to move south-westwards and enter the Mozambique channel by yesterday.

It said that once the storm system entered these warm waters, Eloise was expected to intensify further.

It said excessive rain and very destructive winds was forecast for areas along the Mozambique coastline and adjacent interior.

In KZN, the northern parts of of the province were expected to be affected along with parts of Limpopo and Mpumalanga from Sunday, continuing down to Monday.

“Possible impact as a result of this rain includes widespread flooding, damage to road and bridges as well as possible displacement of affected communities. It is important to note that the accurate prediction of the track of tropical weather disturbances is very challenging indeed.

“Tropical weather systems are notorious for their erratic and unpredictable movement,” said SAWS.

SAWS forecaster Eric Randall said that KZN areas such as Hluhluwe, Manguzi, Mhlabuyalingana, Jozini and Sodwana Bay would mostly like to be affected.

Randall said that there were possibilities that its might reach the coastline as far as Durban, however, they were still observing its possible movement.

KZN MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) Sipho Hlomuka said that teams from disaster management in the uMkhanyakude district had been placed on alert to respond to incidents if necessary.

“As a precaution, communities situated in the low-lying areas are being warned to be on high alert. Disaster management teams will be monitoring areas in the uMkhanyakude district that are prone to weather-related incidents so that they can provide assistance to communities should the need arise,” he said.

Hlomuka also urged communities in the northern parts of the province to be vigilant and to take all the necessary precautions.

The eThekwini Municipality said it was closely monitoring the movement of the aforesaid storm.

The municipality’s spokesperson, Msawakhe Mayisela, said the city had put its disaster management teams on alert in order to be able to respond quickly should the need arise.

The Mercury

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