Malawi floods kill 56, over 80000 displaced as cyclone approaches

Cyclone Idai. Image Supplied by SA rescue team

Malawi floods kill 56, over 80000 displaced as cyclone approaches

Rescue Care Paramedics, IPSS Paramedics, Rescue South Africa and Lenmed Hospital Group geared up throughout last night in preparation to leave for Mozambique this morning (Wednesday, 13 March). South Africa has, through President Cyril Ramaphosa, received humanitarian and search and rescue requests from his counterparts in both Malawi and Mozambique. "Elsewhere, it should be partly cloudy", read the statement. It followed Tropical Storm Desmond, which hit in January. More than 75,900 people are estimated to be displaced, with many ad hoc camps established and people living out in the open as their houses have been destroyed.

"Currently, it's Overland Depression (ex-Idai) and it is moving in a northerly direction at 6 knots (12km/h)", South African Weather Service (SAWS) forecaster Mbavhi Maliage told News24 on Friday.

"This particular weather system is expected to give rise to significant rainfall over Masvingo, Manicaland, Mashonaland East and Mashonaland Central provinces and may result in increased risk of flooding and damage to homes sand infrastructure".

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Paul Herbst of IPSS said: "The teams will be supported by Lenmed Maputo Private Hospital in the country today, thereafter heading north to Beira where the cyclone's epicenter will reach land closer to the weekend".

Parents are advised to exercise discretion tomorrow on whether to allow their children to go to school or not especially where children cross streams and rivers. Flood water and food which has been in contact with flood water is not safe.

Now Malawi has been put on alert for more rain and flooding on Thursday when Tropical Cyclone Idai is expected to make landfall through Beira, in neighbouring Mozambique, the Department of Climate Change and Meteorological Services said. The government, with support from local and global partners, is providing assistance to people already displaced by floods, but access is being impeded by road damage, according to the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

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