South Africa
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SA Weather Service issues storm warning for Gauteng

The South African Weather Service (Saws) has issued a notice for potential storms this weekend in Gauteng.

Saws said it was monitoring a potential risk of flooding for motorists across the road network in Gauteng and other provinces this Saturday and Sunday.

Residents of Gauteng, Mpumalanga, the Free State, North West, northern areas of KwaZulu-Natal, the Eastern Cape and Western Cape should be on alert for the risk of flash flooding, especially in low-lying areas.

During the past week, Saws alerted the public over expected incidents of localised flooding in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal.

Impact-based warnings were also issued for North West regarding severe thunderstorms, large amounts of small hail as well as strong, damaging winds.

“Apart from the extreme eastern areas of Vhembe and Mopani district municipalities in Limpopo on Saturday, showery conditions are expected across many areas in South Africa this weekend,” said Saws in a statement.

“However, flash flooding can be expected in the low-lying areas over the eastern Free State, the southern half of North West and Gauteng.”

The midlands and northern areas of KwaZulu-Natal, as well as Mpumalanga, are also at risk of localised flooding.

Residents living in informal settlements, especially those located along river basins, are advised to take care, as such dwellings could be exposed to flooding.

Saws recommended that disaster management teams be prepared as some of those settlements could become displaced and may require emergency shelter.

The extreme weather conditions anticipated in the days ahead relate to the expected development of a so-called “cut-off low pressure system” in the upper atmosphere, which is likely to be positioned over the western areas of the Northern Cape on Saturday.

Severe thunderstorms associated with heavy downpours can be expected over the central and northern parts of the Eastern and Western Cape, eastern areas of the Northern Cape and western parts of the Free State and North West provinces.

Saws warned motorists that driving conditions in some of these areas was likely to become dangerous due to poor visibility and slippery roads.

“Moreover, extra care should be taken when negotiating bridges and low-water crossings known to be susceptible to flash flooding,” said Saws.

Other thunderstorm-related hazards include the risk of large amounts of small hail which may cause damage to vehicles and infrastructure.

Strong winds may result in difficulty in navigation at sea with short-term disruptions of small harbours and ports between Cape Columbine and Cape Agulhas on Saturday.

Compiled by Narissa Subramoney