Another big storm, growing stronger, set to hit central Mozambique

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - A powerful storm nearing Mozambique is expected to intensify into a tropical cyclone on Friday, according to forecasts, dumping rain onto already swollen rivers in an area devastated by Cyclone Idai less than two years ago. Tropical Storm Eloise, currently over the Mozambique channel whose warm Indian Ocean waters fuel its strength, could develop into a category 3 tropical cyclone, Mozambique's National Meteorological Institute (INAM) said. Cyclones and flash floods, which used to batter this stretch of southeast African coastline only rarely, have become a regular occurrence as warmer waters linked to global warming from greenhouse gas emissions cause stronger storms while rising seas make low-lying coastlines vulnerable to them, experts say.

Reuters January 23, 2021 00:12:35 IST
Another big storm, growing stronger, set to hit central Mozambique

Another big storm growing stronger set to hit central Mozambique

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - A powerful storm nearing Mozambique is expected to intensify into a tropical cyclone on Friday, according to forecasts, dumping rain onto already swollen rivers in an area devastated by Cyclone Idai less than two years ago.

Tropical Storm Eloise, currently over the Mozambique channel whose warm Indian Ocean waters fuel its strength, could develop into a category 3 tropical cyclone, Mozambique's National Meteorological Institute (INAM) said.

Cyclones and flash floods, which used to batter this stretch of southeast African coastline only rarely, have become a regular occurrence as warmer waters linked to global warming from greenhouse gas emissions cause stronger storms while rising seas make low-lying coastlines vulnerable to them, experts say.

INAM said Eloise, due to make landfall on Saturday, could pack winds of up to 140 kmh (87 mph) and deliver 200 millimetres (7.87 inches) of rain in 24 hours. This has raised fears of widespread flooding like that which killed over 1,000 people across Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe, displaced many more and wiped out crops when Idai struck in March 2019.

Mozambique, one of the world's poorest countries, was hit by another cyclone, dubbed Kenneth, six weeks later, bringing floods and high winds that flattened several villages.

Eloise is expected to pummel the port city of Beira and surrounding areas - which bore the brunt of Idai. Some areas are already flooded after heavy rains.

"There are growing concerns regarding the potential for widespread floods," the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said, adding rivers in the region were already on alert due to high water levels.

The International Organisation of Migration says there are 93,418 displaced people in four provinces in Mozambique's central region, most forced from their homes by Cyclone Idai and others displaced by more recent storms and floods.

Idai spawned a vast humanitarian machinery that may mean better preparedness this time around, but resources are already stretched, including by an escalating Islamist insurgency in Mozambique's north.

Around 3,000 people had already been evacuated from Buzi district - outside of Beira and one of the worst-hit by Idai - so far, Luisa Meque, president of Mozambique's National Institute for Disaster Risk Management and Reduction (INGD) said on local television.

The government is warning people to prepare via phone messages, radio and loudspeakers. Last time it was criticised for not doing enough to prepare.

After hitting land, Eloise is forecast to lose strength as it travels inland to southern Zimbabwe, eastern South Africa and far eastern Botswana, but carry heavy rains with it.

(Reporting by Emma Rumney; Additional reporting by Manuel Mucari; Editing by Tim Cocks and Mark Heinrich)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

Subscribe to Moneycontrol Pro at ₹499 for the first year. Use code PRO499. Limited period offer. *T&C apply

also read

Ethiopia's regional Tigray forces name conditions for peace with government
World

Ethiopia's regional Tigray forces name conditions for peace with government

NAIROBI (Reuters) - Forces fighting Ethiopia's military in the Tigray region laid out eight conditions on Friday for beginning peace talks, including the appointment of an international mediator and unimpeded access for humanitarian aid. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed ordered air strikes and a ground offensive against the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) - the former ruling party in the northern region - after regional forces attacked federal army bases in the region on Nov.

Citigroup considering divestiture of some foreign consumer units - Bloomberg Law
Business

Citigroup considering divestiture of some foreign consumer units - Bloomberg Law

(Reuters) - Citigroup Inc is considering divesting some international consumer units, Bloomberg Law reported on Friday, citing people familiar with the matter. The discussions are around divesting units across retail banking in the Asia-Pacific region, the report https://bit.ly/3pD57WP said

Biden tours Pfizer vaccine plant as drugmaker promises to double supply
World

Biden tours Pfizer vaccine plant as drugmaker promises to double supply

By Alexandra Alper and Michael Erman PORTAGE, Mich. (Reuters) - U.S