Floods kill 115 in southern Africa

Floods kill 115 in southern Africa

A powerful tropical storm made landfall in Mozambique on Thursday evening, battering a coastal city with heavy rain and wind at speeds of up to up 170km/h and injuring several people.

The wave of cancellations came as the United Nations warned that "tropical cyclone Idai has regained intensity and is expected to make landfall near Beira city in central Mozambique" later Thursday.

The floods in Mozambique, one of Africa's poorest countries, have already destroyed 5 756 homes, affecting 15 467 households and 141 325 people.

Idai, the tropical cyclone is now positioned in central Mozambique channels and is slowly progressing towards the Mozambique coast.

AccuWeather South Africa reported that the most dire situation for Beira would unfold if Idai makes landfall just to the north of the city, resulting in the highest amount of water piling up around the mouth of the Pungwe River. The deluge will also be in the eastern parts of Zimbabwe.

"There's some cloud and light rain; we're not expecting anything heavy". South Africa has, through President Cyril Ramaphosa, received humanitarian and search and rescue requests from his counterparts in both Malawi and Mozambique. In the days before landfall, meteorologists predicted Idai's storm surge could be as high as 26 feet.

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Mozambique is prone to extreme weather events.

Data from Windy.com showed the depression dumping rain in excess of 30mm.

"The public is advised to continue following weather updates issued from time to time by the Department of Climate Change and Meteorological Services as it continues to monitor weather development over the country to ensure seamless use of weather information on all times to alert by the public and to be kept safe from any weather related threats", reads the statement issued by MET director Jolam Nkhokwe.

And according to reports, the tropical cylcone was packing winds of more than 200km per hour.

Rescuers from different South African agencies are preparing to leave for neighbouring Mozambique in anticipation for Rescue and Relief efforts for the category 3 hurricane Idai that is set to land on Thursday afternoon.

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