Evacuation plans for certain areas in Moz due to Cyclone Idai

Rainfall accumulation as Cyclone Idai hits Mozambique

Cyclone Idai was bringing more floodwater and destruction to areas of Mozambique and Malawi where scores of people have already been killed and tens of thousands displaced by floods over the past few weeks.

A tropical cyclone is a low-pressure weather phenomenon that forms over oceans when the water temperature is at least 26 degrees Celsius. Rapid needs assessments are ongoing in the areas hardest-hit by rains and flooding to verify initial estimates regarding the number of people affected and determine the number of people in need of immediate humanitarian assistance.

"Tropical Cyclone Idai, which formed over the Northern Mozambique Channel on March 9, is expected to make landfall near Beira (eastern Mozambique) on March 14 or 15", said the UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

"There was no tsunami-type storm but Beira and Chinde (400 kilometres, 250 miles northeast of Beira on the coast) were badly hit".

Cyclone Idai makes landfall in Mozambique. But Mozambique is one of the most disaster-prone countries in Africa, and climate change is increasing the severity of flooding events there - as it is almost everywhere.

"The public is advised to continue following weather updates issued from time to time by the Department of Climate Change and Meteorological Services as it continues to monitor weather development over the country to ensure seamless use of weather information on all times to alert by the public and to be kept safe from any weather related threats", reads the statement issued by MET director Jolam Nkhokwe.

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Delaware-based energy giant Anadarko and South African petrochemical group Sasol have significant investments in major liquefied natural gas projects off northern Mozambique, but these are now out of harm's way.

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

Idai slammed onshore with destructive winds and flooding rain in the vicinity of Beira.

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

The group has said it was ready to deploy 70 staff, along with 4x4 vehicles, boats, and jetskis to help with rescue efforts.

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