SA can expect 'strange weather'

2012-01-18 10:12

Johannesburg - South Africans in most parts of the country should prepare themselves for heavy rain and “strange weather” in February, March and April, the South African Weather Service says.

In addition, winter will begin earlier than usual.

The only regions that will receive much less rain over these three months are the central and northwestern parts of Limpopo, the northwestern parts of Mpumalanga and the Southern Cape, said Cobus Olivier, scientist and long-term forecaster at the SA Weather Service.

He said it was possible that all the rain forecast for the three months from February to April could actually fall in February.

Heavy flooding would then occur in February and the other two months would then be drier than usual.

Weather models

Olivier’s weather models also show that winter would start in April.

“We will therefore begin feeling the cold early in winter.”

Between 75mm and 150mm rain was measured between midnight on Monday evening to 20:00 on Tuesday in the Lowveld in Mpumalanga and a flood warning was issued in the area, reported Buks Viljoen.

A low water bridge over the Komati River near Tenbosch (Hectorspruit) was flooded, as was another on the Driekoppies road at One Tree Hill near the Jeppes Reef border post.

At Matsulu near Kaapmuiden, a shack collapsed due to the rain.

Heavy rain which has fallen in Mozambique since Monday led to flooding in low-lying regions in Maputo, reported Erika Gibson.

Weather forecasters at the SA Weather Office said normal weather conditions would return to the country on Wednesday.

There was only a 60% chance of heavy rain in northern KwaZulu-Natal.

Heavy rain

The weather models furthermore indicate that heavy rain will continue to fall in large parts of the country up until June, except in a stretch running from north to south in Mpumalanga (the Highveld), the Northern and Southern Cape.

The KwaZulu-Natal Midlands could expect heavy rain in especially May and June while less rain was expected over the rest of the country.

“We are dealing with strange weather systems here,” said Olivier.

Dr Linda Makuleni, executive head of the SA Weather Service said at COP 17 in December that floods in South Africa at the beginning of 2011 could definitely be attributed to climate change.

  • RE - 2012-01-18 10:16

    guess thats what u say when u cant forecast the weather.

      Natalya - 2012-01-18 10:59


      Sharon - 2012-01-18 12:28

      All they should say is :"There where the sun shines it's not raining, and there where it rains, the sun doesn't shine"

      procold2 - 2012-01-18 12:30

      have never believed them, get up in the morning and look outside,if still not sure walk outside and see if you need to put on long pants and a jersy

      TJ - 2012-01-18 13:15

      A friend who works at the weather service once told us we must all go to the mountains with him as it would be snowing. We were still young and dumb and believed him. After all, look where he works. We ended up in the mountains having a wonderully warm Spring type day. A while later he told us it would be beautiful weather at the same place and we must all go up together for a day of fun and braai, etc. Only about half believed him again so they went up with him. They almost got lost in a snow storm. Does that say enough about the weather forecasters?

      Hallo - 2012-01-18 14:27

      Idiots without proper knowledge easily criticise

  • Peter - 2012-01-18 10:26

    Winter to start in April? Unless they meant that April will, as always, be first colder month of the year. Normally the first snow falls on higher mountains in the Cape and KZN also occur in April. Hopefully not too many will take the Weather Service's weather model predictions too seriously.

      Jeffrey - 2012-01-18 12:37

      Careful what you say, Peter. You could end up with a R10million fine or sit in jail for ten years.

      Martin - 2012-01-18 13:12

      in the morning look out the window, accurate weather report right there

      Mildly_Amused - 2012-01-18 16:09

      @Martin - that's not always that accurate either. We often have days here that look all sunny and cute and end up really rainy and windy. And vice versa.

  • Mark - 2012-01-18 10:35

    “We are dealing with strange weather systems here,” said Olivier. Really can you give us some more info. All I read is its coming, its climate change, but no real reason or explantion to the "strange weather system"

  • mnbain - 2012-01-18 10:43

    And soon nobody else will be allowed to make predictions!!! EISH

  • Steve - 2012-01-18 10:45

    Someone could be fined R10 million for reporting this, I hope they are right!

  • Sechaba - 2012-01-18 11:09

    soon you could been dealt a heavy fine for reporting hoax severe weather conditions like this, i say "hoax" because all previous year winter has been knocking during April, so from your observations there is nothing different from all other past years

  • arno.albertyn - 2012-01-18 11:11

    Het die reën dan alweer vir Namakwaland vergeet?

  • Thukza - 2012-01-18 11:15

    I told you the world will end by heaavy floods on 21 Dec 2012

      Lerato - 2012-01-18 11:54


      Mildly_Amused - 2012-01-18 16:11

      Nah, I'm leaning towards the Zombie apocalypse idea.

  • Natsvdm - 2012-01-18 11:18

    Well..this explains the "strange" weather in PE for the past weeks....

  • Grace - 2012-01-18 11:20

    As if we hadn't noticed !

  • Johnny - 2012-01-18 11:21

    The weather in SA is not all that is strange !!

  • Andriette - 2012-01-18 11:23

    Isn't heavy rain supposed to be normal for this time of year? April is also when the season changes so it's supposed to get colder.

      David - 2012-01-18 12:41

      Perfectly normal for this time of the year...I dont want be jailed by predicting more than this..LOL

      RobertaKeeling - 2012-01-18 13:21

      @David - don't worry, that's not a prediction, but a statement, so you should be OK. :-) (I say "should" because you never know with our lawmakers!!)

  • Koos - 2012-01-18 11:29

    mmmmm 2012 dec is coming sooner than we think!!!!

  • Mangoplanet - 2012-01-18 11:29

    I hope your predictions are correct Mr Olivier, otherwise you will get a hefty fine. But looking at the weather we've been having, this is very possible.

  • mike.miga - 2012-01-18 11:31

    I hope we'l survive

  • Grimett - 2012-01-18 11:37

    Does that mean summer is ending earlier than usual ?

      Gerhard - 2012-01-18 12:52

      No, summer will be just as long as it usually is. Winter will come sooner and therefore we expect the two seasons to overlap. The end of summer is, however, epected to be a bit cooler than it usually is.

  • Deon - 2012-01-18 11:46

    I have printed the article and inserted it in my diary at the end of June. I would like to reserve my comments untill then.

      RobertaKeeling - 2012-01-18 13:22

      Clever man! Brilliant idea!

      Rodney - 2012-01-18 17:24

      lol kewl idea ,

  • Pete - 2012-01-18 11:48

    bring on winter

  • Marius - 2012-01-18 11:52

    My Oupa het altyd gese: "As jy nie wil lieg nie, hou jou neus uit die weer uit."

  • Sam - 2012-01-18 11:59

    Did you guys get written permission from the government to tell us this?

      STYLEbudd - 2012-01-18 12:10

      dont' tell Julius , he may blame it on apartheid and the whities

      Grimett - 2012-01-18 12:11

      yes, that's why its so strange.

      RobertaKeeling - 2012-01-18 13:23

      He doesn't have to aks for permission. They GIVE permissions, so I suppose whatever they say is OK even if it's wrong! Sorry but now I am confussed!!!

  • earthmaid - 2012-01-18 11:59

    if the weather systems are so strange, how can they predict where the rain will and wont fall? so far the weather has been hot and humid, hardly any rain in the Southern Cape, and this is normal for Jan, Feb. The headline should be: "Expect the weather to cool down as winter approaches".

  • pius.mlomo - 2012-01-18 12:04

    Prepare for the worst people. I must tell you these weather people sometimes gues the weather in a wrong way

  • Gavin - 2012-01-18 12:11

    The weather over the last 2 evenings has been a bit odd to say the least, they've felt like mild winters evenings. I'm always wary of predictions like this, ignore them at your peril....

  • Eddy - 2012-01-18 12:15

    They cannot forecast it correctly for tomorrow now they try for months in advance????? We have always had unpredictable weather on this planet.

  • meredith.r.pollock - 2012-01-18 12:36

    Seeing is believing LOL, but being a winter person I'd be quite happy for winter to arrive in April - sorry summer people :-)

  • tony.delucchi - 2012-01-18 12:37

    ...and tomorrow there will be weather all over the country!

      Twolips - 2012-01-18 13:20

      You sound like Haas Das se Nuuskas!

  • Fred - 2012-01-18 12:44

    Eddard Stark said it first "Winter is coming..."

  • jmccaffs - 2012-01-18 12:48

    strange waether !!!!!

  • SirFGrumpy - 2012-01-18 12:50

    You're risking a R5 million fine for these forecasts :)

      meredith.r.pollock - 2012-01-18 13:26

      No they not, they are repeating what the SA weather services has stated, you need to listen properly, all independent weather forecasters who are not linked to the SA weather services are the ones liable for fines.. Get your facts straight before you comment...

      Sunett - 2012-01-18 14:05

      Meredith, I think the smiley face at the end of SirFGrumpy's comment means he was joking...

  • Deon - 2012-01-18 12:53

    Can't wait for it, it is a "bit warm" in Cape Town. TG for air conditioner at home.

  • Martin - 2012-01-18 13:11

    lmao flippin idiots

  • Melanie - 2012-01-18 13:16

    TO SWOP: BMW 318i.....for anything that floats! lol

  • RobertaKeeling - 2012-01-18 13:17

    Oh dear - I suppose there will be weather all over the country then, whether you like it or not. What to do, what to do!! :-)

  • john.ncala - 2012-01-18 13:24

    if they are wrong who will fine them

  • Julie - 2012-01-18 13:35

    think about this - whatever the weathermen say, their predictions will always be correct. If they predict 30% rain for an area, and it means 70% fine weather, the forecast will still be correct, it being fine, or perhaps they say it's going to be a fine day and it does rain, it is still spot-on, not so? However, generally speaking, S.A. is a mainly dry country and even way back in its early history the weather has always been pretty unpredictable, so despite all the modern technology to assist in forecasting, there are no absolutes in this science. So whatever happens, we will have to live with it, like it or not...

  • AquaticApe - 2012-01-18 13:45

    The SAWS haven't had a correct weather forecast here in Durbs for the last decade. As far as winter starting early, the weather may get colder sooner but winter will start on the 21st June every year until Earth's tilt changes and our annual trip around the sun varies from what it currently is! Whether the met office likes it or not we have four seasons each three months long that start and end on each equinox and solstice.

  • duncan.cramer - 2012-01-18 13:58

    According to SA Weather Service website, they currently do not have a Senior Manager for Forecasting, or Senior Manager for Research on their Senior Management team. Fortunately, they do have: Senior Manager: Stakeholder Relations Senior Manager: Corporate Communications Senior Manager: ICT Senior Manager: Supply Chain Management So even though they dont have data from their senior researcher and forecaster, they will however be able to communicate it in a formal way, to their stakeholders, and do so efficiently via the IT networks. And if not, they can still spend your tax moola.

      raath - 2012-01-19 11:10

      So we can say that the IT guy gets the weather data, looks at it, goes: "Hey man, that's strange" - communicates to his boss that he cannot analyse weather patterns, the boss then misinterprets it and communicates to the public that we are expecting "Strange weather". Kinda makes sense :)

  • Clive - 2012-01-18 14:02

    At the beginning of the rainy season, the "experts" predicted heavy rains right through to March. This was in November when heavy rains were falling. In Dec & Jan in KZN, way below 10 year average rainfall has occured. What went wrong ? so why should I pay attention to their latest predictions ?

  • Hendrik - 2012-01-18 14:07

    If I recall the details of the planned law correctly, fortunately this man will be safe from prosecution because the S.A. weather servcie are the only people allowed to issue warnings and give WRONG predictions. Talk about protecting a monopoly, one would think they would only be too happy if someone else gets it wrong occasionally instead of the finger always pointing at them? Wonderful country we live in. Long jail term or MASSIVE fine for "unauthorised weather reports", but the two vermin that attcaked & mutilated Alison in P.E. are likley to get out on parole! Maybe if the Mayan's were right about the world ending later this year it is somehting we should can look forward to. No more worries for law abiding normal people then.

  • loxidonta - 2012-01-18 15:07

    This is us humans destroying the world.

  • kassych - 2012-01-18 15:08

    the "strange" in that sentence says it all..better prepare than be caught napping folks !

  • Why - 2012-01-18 15:25

    Love the comments. keep them coming. Since this is the last year before the world ends in Dec, does it mean that the SA weather service is getting it right is at least opting for the word "strange" to cover themselves for something expected later on, like the changing of seasons, end of the world. Think that they are ever dissapointed that they got it wrong afterwards? And to the guys in the cape cooking.... Look at the mountain and enjoy it. At least you are going to not have a mountain where you are going because you are unfriendly to tourists that jump off the thing. So get use to the temperature.

  • aruan999 - 2012-01-18 15:41

    is this part of the 2012 changeover starting? More to follow weather wise all over earth, and also POWER STRUGGLES (starting now in SA!)and many more overturning events. We shall be redeemed from our perception that we are in charge of all...and of our God & gods concept!

      Victor - 2012-01-18 15:52

      FFS, 2012 paranoia yet again

      raath - 2012-01-19 11:12

      @Victor, I agree. My eyes are getting sore from all the rolling.

  • Robin - 2012-01-18 15:55

    Oh Wow! Profound words of wisdom - I guess the experts have been gazing at their crystal balls again! What sort of scientist (sic!)makes such statements without backing them up with source data? Africa has changeable and unpredictable weather - live with it! As for hanging every weather phenomenon on so-called 'Climate Change"; what utter rubbish but typical of the crud resulting from COP-17.

      David - 2012-01-19 08:27

      I have a question for you then. Seeing you are the genius at weather and global disasters. How do you know that weather is not changing dramatically, how do you know whether the flood disasters and various other climatic disasters are not going to happen the way scientists more or less predict them? Scientists study this kind of thing for a living. How can you expect the media to print their evidential findings? As it would take up many pages to start with. What are your science, physics, astrophysics, or any scientific qualifications for that matter?

      Robin - 2012-01-20 17:45

      @ David, Scientists studying weather and/or climate for a living doesn't make their predictions any more reliable than sheer guesswork. I don't know what the future may bring any more than top weather scientists do - they have the crystal balls, I dont! If you are so into believing 'experts' then tell me how many of their climate predictions have come true since 1970! I'll tell you - not one!

  • Lorenzo - 2012-01-18 16:13

    Weatherman… the only job in the world you can get wrong 99% of the time and still be employed.!

  • Francois - 2012-01-18 16:20

    Just a note to all you guys criticizing the poor weather man... These guys are not Gods telling you what will happen for a fact. They predict the weather using very expensive equipment to give us a rough forecast. If you don't like it, ignore it, and keep your opinion to yourself so that highly skilled and qualified people can do their job! Just saying.

  • frederic.egersdorfer - 2012-01-18 16:44

    One word... HAARP

  • IrvinIco - 2012-01-18 16:47

    The effects of global warming and climate change are fast chatching up with us.

  • andrew.arnesen - 2012-01-18 17:00

    I wonder if he was so busy looking at isothermic graphs that he didn't hear about the concept 'global warming'??

  • Hugh - 2012-01-18 17:49

    I guess with all these weather changes God is trying to get our attention.