Parts of Mozambique given until today to evacuate as Cyclone Idai hits hard. This comes after Weather Today reported that rain was expected to be between 400 and 900 millimetres, reports Lowvelder.
People in low-lying areas where the cyclone is expected to hit have been instructed to evacuate the area by Wednesday afternoon. Lodges and local fishermen have been warned to secure their boats and fishing gear as the tide surges might damage them.
The main area affected will be Beira, but surrounding areas as far as down the coast as Vilanculos could be affected.
Good morning. Your morning satellite image of Tropical Cyclone IDAI (13 March 2019). IDAI will regain strength and will be upgraded to Intense Tropical Cyclone status later today according to La Reunion. It is still expected to make landfall around Beira on Thursday evening. pic.twitter.com/avioX8c9o8
— SA Weather Service (@SAWeatherServic) March 13, 2019
AccuWeather South Africa reported that the most serious situation for Beira would unfold if Idai makes landfall just to the north of the city, resulting in the highest amount of water piling up around the mouth of the Pungwe River. Storm-surge flooding may also spread farther up the river, inundating homes and businesses.
Residents in Beira, as well as Chiloane, Nova Sofala and Chinde, are urged to closely monitor the track of Idai and make the necessary storm preparations. The winds can cause devastating damage, including to well-built framed homes, in the vicinity of landfall. Electricity and water may be unavailable for several days to weeks after the storm.
Storm Report South Africa reported that an overall RED alert was issued for Mozambique and red score by GDACS.
According to the Saffir-Simpson scale, Cyclone Idai is now an extremely dangerous category 4 storm and has explosively intensified in the past 8 hours, which is expected to make landfall by tomorrow.
At this stage, if anything should be affecting the North Eastern parts of South Africa, Storm Report SA will update promptly. For now, they are monitoring the situation every hour.
The South African weather outlook has warned isolated showers or thunderstorms are possible almost anywhere (except in Limpopo and the Northern Cape), with widespread rain and scattered thunderstorm expected over southern and central parts of the Free State, Lesotho, and the North Eastern interior of the Eastern Cape.