Icy SA weather normal, says service

2014-06-10 13:34
(Sindisiwe Nkohle, News24 User)

(Sindisiwe Nkohle, News24 User)

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Everything you need to know about the cold weather

2014-06-06 11:41

What's with the weather? Meteorologist Rian Smit explains exactly what's causing the icy conditions we're experiencing around the country.WATCH

Cape Town - As most of South Africa shivers in the cold that to many feels unprecedented, the South African Weather Service has bad news: It's normal for winter and more may be on the way.

Temperatures in SA have plummeted over several days and snow has fallen on the high-lying areas of the Western Cape, Northern Cape and Eastern Cape, but the cold front that caused it is typical for the season.

"Yes, it is typical for this time of year - I mean we are in winter already," Stella Nake, forecaster and the South African Weather Service told News24.

Though temperatures in Gauteng are set to top 20°C this week, mornings are cold at single digits on the thermometer, reaching only 5°C by Monday on the forecast.

The Western Cape will recover slightly from the bitter cold that saw snowfalls over the mountains, but rain is predicted for the weekend as the temperature stays locked in the low teens.

Homeless people

While the sun will return to the Eastern Cape, the Free State will remain cold with temperatures starting at a low -5°C on Wednesday and Thursday morning.

Despite clearing skies in some parts of the country, the road conditions remain treacherous with localised flooding on motorways.

Traffic authorities advised drivers to be cautious, increase following distance, and drive with lights on where visibility was low.

Have you seen wild weather in your corner of SA? Send pictures to News24 to photos@news24.com or upload them here

Charities have also appealed to South Africans to make donations of blankets and meals to homeless people who often struggle to endure the cold weather.

The cold weather is also likely to put additional strain on power systems as more people make use of electric heaters.

"We have noted rising demand especially during peak hours as the cold weather sets in. Eskom is taking all necessary steps available to keep the lights on but we require partnership with our customers to ensure that we reduce electricity usage," said Eskom.

Flights at Lanseria airport were delayed on Tuesday as frost on the wings rendered aeroplanes unable to fly, but Nake said that this was typical of the effect of a cold front.

"It's a nice cold front that left cold air around. When we expect temperatures to be below 2°C, we will have some frost in the area."

She added that Cape Town hit a record low for June at 5.9°C, but Sutherland looks as if it will retain its title as the coldest in the country.

"The minimum for Sutherland was -9°C this morning," said Nake.

For the latest information visit our weather page

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