‘No severe thunderstorms expected in the KZN Midlands’

2019-11-20 06:02
photo: supplied Two of the houses that were affected in Mpolweni near New Hanover.

photo: supplied Two of the houses that were affected in Mpolweni near New Hanover.

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THE South African Weather Service has confirmed that there will be no severe thunderstorms this week in Greytown and other parts of the KZN Midlands.

SA Weather Service forecaster at the at King Shaka International Airport Wiseman Dlamini said there was a 30% chance of rain in the Midlands this week.

“According to our records there will be no severe thunderstorms and tornado in the areas close to Greytown this week.

“Normal thunderstorms can be expected this week, but it will not be bad as last week,” Dlamini said.

On Tuesday, November 12, residents from Mpolweni and Thokoza near New Hanover were left homeless when a tornado surged through the area, leaving destruction in its wake.

Leadership from uMshwathi Municipality together with provincial executive agreed that the most dramatic weather-related incident was the tornado at New Hanover (specifically in Thokozani and Mpolweni) in the uMshwathi local municipality, just outside Pietermaritzburg, that ripped through the area, leaving scores of people injured and damaging homes and public infrastructure.

The provincial executive extended messages of condolences to the family of Sphelele Ndlovu (40), who passed away after a house collapsed on her, as well to the family of Nonhlanhla Buthelezi (64), who passed away after a tree was uprooted by the tornado and collapsed a house on her.

KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala together with the MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Sipho Hlomuka, and the MEC for Finance, Ravi Pillay, as well as the mayors of uMgungundlovu and uMshwathi Municipalities visited the affected areas and the deceased families to lead relief efforts and commence clean-up operations.

Several homes in the area were affected, having had their roofs blown away, and some were completely destroyed. Trees were uprooted and roads were also damaged during the storm.

uMshwathi Municipality spokesperson Sibusiso Mkhithi said the municipality, in partnership with government departments, were in the process of assisting affected families.

“There was an operation centre at Mpolweni where most of the affected [were being] housed. At the moment, the affected families have moved back to their homes.

“Eskom is in the process of restoring power to the affected families.

“We work in partnership with the human settlement [department] to access the damage caused by the tornado.

“We are trying everything possible to assist the families,” he said.

Mkhithi said the Department of Home Affairs is currently assisting with the issuing of temporary IDs and certificates and all relevant documents to all affected family members who will undergo a thorough authentication process.

The municipality has opened a bank account, seeking donations from South Africans to assist the affected families.

Account: Money Market account

Account number: 621 01572172

Bank: FNB

Type: Business Money Market investment.

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