Cyclone Idai makes landfall in Mozambique

Cyclone Idai makes landfall in Mozambique

The number of people killed in floods in southern Malawi has risen to 56, an official said on Wednesday, with the country now also on alert for an approaching tropical cyclone.

A tropical cyclone is a low-pressure weather phenomenon that forms over oceans when the water temperature is at least 26 degrees Celsius.

The cyclone is set to affect Beira on the Mozambican coastline.

Before the storm formed over the Mozambique Channel this week, it was a disturbance that settled over the region and unleashed torrential rains the flooded much of the two neighboring countries.

The Meteorological Service Department (MSD) has confirmed that a Tropical Cyclone Idai, which is brewing in Mozambique, is expected to hit Zimbabwe over the weekend. Rainfall of 50 mm is expected within the next 24 hours in some areas, accompanied by strong winds.

As Tropical Cyclone Idai comes back ashore in southern Africa, flooding from the system that became the storm has killed 122 people in Mozambique and Malawi, making it the deadliest weather disaster of 2019.

Malawi floods kill 56, over 80000 displaced as cyclone approaches

"Substantial devastation with massive flooding both from river and sea is expected" when Idai makes landfall, South African charity Gift of the Givers said, indicating it was ready to deploy 70 rescue staff, along with 4x4 vehicles, boats, and jetskis to help with rescue efforts.

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Cyclones are typical for Mozambique at this time of year, but there are concerns that the weather patterns have been increasing in intensity. The National Institute of Disaster Management in Mozambique estimates a funding requirement of about US$18 million for food and non-food items, and an additional $13.9 million for emergency road work in Zambezia (where 31 per cent of the road network has been damaged) and Cabo Delgado (50 per cent of the road network damaged).

And according to reports, the tropical cylcone was packing winds of more than 200km per hour.

Data from showed the depression dumping rain in excess of 30mm.

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