Heavy rain, flooding to hit Western Cape, warns SA Weather Service

2018-12-06 15:51
Rain is predicted for South Africa. (Duncan Alfreds, News24, file)

Rain is predicted for South Africa. (Duncan Alfreds, News24, file)

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The South African Weather Service (SAWS) is warning of heavy rain in the Western Cape, as a cold front makes landfall on Thursday night.

The SAWS forecast indicated a 60% chance of rain on Thursday and an 80% chance on Friday. The wet weather is expected to clear by Sunday as the Cape Town temperature climbs to 23°C.

READ: Severe thundershower warning issued for northern parts of SA

The forecast warned of heavy downpours across the Cape metropole, and flooding in the Overberg and Cape winelands on Thursday night and Friday morning.

But a forecaster said that the intensity of the rain would not be as bad as a winter rain storm.

"It won't be that bad [as a winter storm]. They are expecting a cold front to pass the Western Cape this evening," SAWS forecaster Banetia Phaqula told News24.

Flooding in low-lying areas

SAWS data also predicted sea swells in excess of 6m due to strong winds.

Phaqula said the warning was particularly relevant for people living on the Cape Flats who may not want to evacuate their homes.

"The reason they issue alerts is for the low-lying areas of the Cape Flats. They are often difficult people to try and get out of harm's way."

Flooding in these areas could lead to the activation of Cape Town's Disaster Risk Management Centre, which employs multiple agencies to deal with disasters.

According to Windy.com, winds of 70km/h can be expected on Friday morning and up to 20mm of rain may fall in places, leading to localised flooding.

While a high pressure system is typical for the Western Cape during summer, there is a low pressure off the west coast of SA.

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