Johannesburg - Cyclone Idai has damaged an estimated 90 percent of the Mozambican city of Beira, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) said on Monday, citing an initial assessment by a team of its aid workers.
The IFRC said the death toll from the impact of the cyclone, which has also affected neighbouring Malawi and Zimbabwe, is currently estimated at 150.
“The situation is terrible. The scale of devastation is enormous. It seems that 90 percent of the area is completely destroyed," Jamie LeSueur, who is leading the IFRC assessment team into Beira, said after an aerial inspection.
The IFRC team was among the first to arrive in Beira on Sunday since Idai made landfall around March 14/15. With Beira’s airport closed, the team drove from Mozambique's capital Maputo before taking a helicopter for the last part of the journey. Roads into Beira have been cut off by flooding.
“Almost everything is destroyed. Communication lines have been completely cut and roads have been destroyed. Some affected communities are not accessible,”said LeSueur.