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Gauteng emergency services on high alert after woman injured in freak hail storm

Emergency teams remain on high alert following a freak hail storm and heavy downpours in parts of Gauteng on Monday night. File Picture: Paballo Thekiso / Independent Newspapers

Emergency teams remain on high alert following a freak hail storm and heavy downpours in parts of Gauteng on Monday night. File Picture: Paballo Thekiso / Independent Newspapers

Published Nov 14, 2023

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Emergency teams remain on high alert following a freak hail storm and heavy downpours in parts of Gauteng on Monday night.

At least one person was left injured after falling into a drain in Soweto, Johannesburg Emergency Services spokesperson Robert Mulaudzi said.

He said the paramedics rescued the woman, and she was rushed to hospital for further treatment.

Mulaudzi urged residents to remain on high alert as more rain is predicted across the province.

Speaking to SABC News, he said emergency services are monitoring all seven regions across Johannesburg.

Mulaudzi added that they are urging drivers to be cautious when driving.

He said residents in lower-lying parts of the province need to be wary of crossing streams and should keep an eye on small children to steer clear of rivers.

On Monday, residents living in Midrand, Fourways, and surrounding areas reported large hailstones at around 5pm. Meanwhile, motorists were stranded on the N1 following heavy downpours.

A tornado was also experienced in the Lekwa Local Municipality in Mpumalanga.

The SA Weather Service (Saws) explained that a set up of an extension of a lower pressure area over central regions, combined with a high pressure system to the east, allowed for low-level moisture to be advected (transferred heat) into the north-eastern parts of the country, leading to the development of thunderstorms.

"Thunderstorms started developing over south-eastern North West province and the northern Free State, moving towards Gauteng and Mpumalanga," the forecaster said.

Saws said the isolated thunderstorm in Gauteng caused extensive damage to property and infrastructure due to the large hail.

"There were also reports of flooding as well as large amounts of small hail. The impact in Mpumalanga included that of electrical infrastructure, where a substation was affected as well as uprooted trees which fell onto power lines and fences in the Lekwa LM," Saws stated.

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