Madagascar hit by storm braces for another ‘big’

NAIROBI, KENYA – The island of Madagascar off the east coast of Africa is facing another cyclone that has been hit by three major tropical cyclones in the last month.

Cyclone Emnati is expected to make landfall on Madagascar’s east coast late Tuesday amid fears it will be more powerful than the three storms that have killed nearly 200 people this season. Most of those deaths were in the Indian Ocean islands but people also died in Mozambique and Malawi on the African continent.

Tropical Cyclone Ana made landfall in Madagascar in late January. The devastating storm Batsirai left more than 120 people dead and about 143,000 displaced on the island earlier this month, destroying buildings and roads. Typhoon Dumako made landfall last week.

According to the United Nations weather station on Reunion Island, which tracks tornadoes, a red alert has been issued for Emnati, which is moving over the Indian Ocean and currently has a maximum wind speed of 222 km/h. H. . Emnati has been classified as a strong cyclonic storm and is expected to hit the Vatomandry and Farafangana regions of eastern Madagascar with heavy rain, high tides and strong winds Tuesday night.

“We are preparing for a big event,” said Vincent Dalonneau, Madagascar director of the relief agency Humanitarian & Inclusion. “This is the most intense tornado season I’ve seen since I’ve been here. We’ve prepared for the storm. Our teams are tired and still preparing for multiple emergencies at the same time. at the time.”

The United Nations weather agency said it expected eight to 12 more tornadoes to hit Madagascar and southern Africa by the time the hurricane season ends in May. The agency had previously warned of more intense “high-impact tropical cyclones, coastal flooding and intense rain associated with climate change.”

Cyclones Idai and Cyclone Kenneth caused massive destruction and hundreds of deaths in Mozambique and neighboring countries in 2019, prompting the United Nations weather agency to dispatch a task force to the area.

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