Five People Die as Massive Storm Lashes Cape Town, Surrounds

Ray Weaver
June 8, 2017

Cape Town and the entire Western Cape province of South Africa is on alert after South African Weather Service issued repeated warnings of a major storm in the next three days.

Reports began emerging on Wednesday morning of trees being uprooted, widespread power outages and roads being flooded across Cape Town - and, according to weather forecasters, the city is only expected to bear the full brunt of the storm later in the day. Two people were injured when a roof blew off in Lavender Hill.

"Very high and rough sea conditions with possible storm surges are also very likely along the entire coast of the Northern and Western Cape, which will experience the brunt of the damaging waves".

All schools were closed in the Western Cape on Wednesday‚ and the province's four universities - Cape Town‚ Western Cape‚ Stellenbosch and Cape Peninsula University of Technology - followed suit. The region has been suffering a severe drought.

Metrorail services between Kraaifontein and Bellville have been cancelled and commuters should expect delays of up to an hour on all other lines, Metrorail said on Twitter.

By Wednesday night, Disaster Risk Management officials had made assessments in the following areas: Khayelitsha, Nyanga, Gugulethu, Macassar Village, Faure and Wesbank.

Cape Town workers said they had taken measures to protect some poor residents, who live in sprawling neighborhoods of makeshift homes.

One outlet, Jacaranda FM, attributed the death toll of eight to James-Brent Styan, a provincial official.

"We will be working with schools to ensure that the programme returns to normal [on Thursday] and we request their understanding and cooperation in the circumstances", he said.

"Our primary concern is the safety of learners and staff", says Brian Schreuder, head of Education Western Cape.

Other reports by Insurance News

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