Met Dept warns of thunderstorms, heavy rains till weekend

THE Meteorological Services Department (MSD) has issued a thunderstorm alert with the Matabeleland region among the areas expected to receive the heaviest rains in 24 hours.

MSD issued the warning on Tuesday, noting that the lightning and heavy rains will persist from Wednesday until Sunday.

MSD revealed that the rains could lead to flash and riverine floods in some areas.

“Thunderstorms and rains are expected over much of the country, through to Sunday 20 December, with heavier falls in excess of 50 millimetres in 24 hours in areas such as Matabeleland North, Matabeleland South, Bulawayo Metropolitan, Midlands into Masvingo.

“This is due to moisture from a cloud system currently active over Botswana. These projected rains may lead to flash and riverine floods posing potential risk in the Western and Southern parts of the country, where more than 50 millimetres of rain are expected,” reads part of the warning.

The heavy rains could be a blessing to residents in Bulawayo who have been facing an acute water shortage in the past year and relies on the Umzingwane catchment in Matabeleland South where all its supply dams are located.

Three of the city’s six supply dams- Umzingwane, Upper Ncema and Lower Ncema- were decommissioned as water levels continued to dwindle. ■

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