Disaster teams on standby as more bad weather expected in KZN

2019-12-03 14:48

Disaster management teams have yet again been placed on high alert in KwaZulu-Natal, with heavy rains and thunderstorms predicted this week.

KwaZulu-Natal Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs MEC Sipho Hlomuka said on Tuesday that this followed a weather warning being issued by the South African Weather Service (SAWS), which indicates the possibility of severe thunderstorms in the uThukela, uMgungundlovu and Harry Gwala districts.

The warning indicated a high possibility of heavy rains which could lead to flooding and reduced visibility.

"We have placed our teams on high alert as inclement weather conditions continue to pose a serious risk to residents in our province. Our teams are monitoring areas that are prone to flooding and will be able to respond should any situations arise," said Hlomuka.

The weather warning also said there was a risk of gale-force winds along the coast in the uMkhanyakude district, which could potentially uproot trees.

"We are appealing to residents, especially along the coast, to put their safety first and ensure that they seek shelter in a sturdy building during these strong winds," Hlomuka added. 

High seas are also expected along the coast of the province, with heavy swells above 4m predicted.

Hlomuka called on parents and those who might be going to the beach to take the necessary precautions.

At least 16 people have been killed in the province since October 25 due to inclement weather conditions.

Thirteen houses and some schools were damaged in the Ulundi area when a tornado swept through the area last weekend.

The tornado was the second tornado in less than 24 hours to hit the province, after another struck Utrecht during the same weekend.

Cogta spokesperson Senzelwe Mzila had said there were no reports of injuries or loss of life following Ulundi's tornado.

Earlier this month, a tornado-ravaged eMpolweni, New Hanover, claiming two lives and displacing hundreds, while another was sighted in Bergville days later.

Read more on:    sa weather service  |  durban  |  weather
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