Tropical cyclone warning for South Africa

Dineo is expected to travel west into South Africa today (Thursday 16 February). The storm should be weakening, but the Limpopo River flowing from Mozambique could be severely swollen and the risk of flooding could see communities ordered to evacuate, warns Chief Forecaster at the South African Weather Service Kevin Rae. Parts of South Africa […]

Dineo is expected to travel west into South Africa today (Thursday 16 February). The storm should be weakening, but the Limpopo River flowing from Mozambique could be severely swollen and the risk of flooding could see communities ordered to evacuate, warns Chief Forecaster at the South African Weather Service Kevin Rae.

Parts of South Africa are facing severe rains and the risk of flooding over the next two days as tropical storm, Dineo, sweeps in from Mozambique.

“This is a formidable storm system with the potential to cause much damage to coastal and inland infrastructure and there is also a good chance that it will reach tropical cyclone status within the next six to 12 hours,” says the South African Weather Service.

Dineo was due to hit Mozambique on Wednesday night with winds of about 130km/h and torrential rains resulting in widespread flooding. Southern Mozambique is particularly at risk, with very rough seas and the risk of storm surge around Massinga, Inhambane and Xai-Xai.

On Thursday, Dineo is expected to travel west into South Africa. The storm should be weakening, but the Limpopo River flowing from Mozambique could be severely swollen and the risk of flooding could see communities ordered to evacuate, warns Chief Forecaster at the South African Weather Service Kevin Rae.

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Heavy rain is expected over the entire eastern half of Limpopo, including the Kruger National Park, where up to 200mm of rain could fall on both Thursday and Friday.

Rivers in the region will flow strongly during the weekend and into next week.

Safety Tips:
• Listen to the special warnings on the radio and TV.
• If at all possible stay indoors and off the roads.
• If you are indoors during a storm, stay away from windows and doors. Shelter in the strongest part of the house – internal hallway, bathroom or cellar.
• Secure everything that could be blown around or torn loose. Flying objects such as garbage cans and garden furniture can injure people and damage property.
• If the building begins to break up, protect yourself with a rug, mattress or blanket and shelter under a bench or table.
• If you are advised by officials to evacuate, do so. Delay may make later evacuation impossible. Take an emergency kit with you.
• Disconnect appliances. You can use a cellular telephone, but it is not safe to use a corded telephone.
• If you must travel, do so with caution and let someone know your route and arrival time.
• Stay in your vehicle if caught on the road, with the handbrake on. Park well clear of trees or power lines that may fall on you, and away from low areas that might flood.
• Be aware of the possibly of fallen trees or power lines and flying debris.

SAWS will continue to monitor developments and post updates on www.weathersa.co.za and on Twitter @SAWeatherServic.