SOUTHERN AFRICA; 27 January; (Update) Flooding affects thousands in various countries

flooding 2015

According to reports released on 27 January, as many as 200 people have been killed, and tens of thousands displaced, as a result of ongoing flooding in the Southern African countries of Malawi, Zimbabwe, Madagascar and Mozambique. In Malawi, flooding has affected an estimated 638,000 people; the country’s southern Nsanje, Chikwawa, Phalombe and Zomba districts are among the worst affected. In Mozambique, adverse weather conditions have left as many as 117 people dead and affected 144,330 others in the Zambezia, Nampula, Niassa and Cabo Delgado provinces. In Zimbabwe, the Manicaland, Mashonaland Central, Mashonaland East, Mashonaland West and Midlands provinces have reported widespread flooding. A combination of seasonal rains and tropical storm systems has brought heavy flooding to Madagascar, where 68 people have been killed and nearly 120,000 displaced across the island-nation. The Southern African rainy season typically extends from October to April, with most countries in the region experiencing up to 75 percent of their annual rainfall during this period. Poor infrastructure and limited prevention mechanisms routinely result in affected areas experiencing significant and widespread flood damage. Consequently, further heavy rainfall conducive to flooding should be expected in the coming weeks. Persons currently in the affected region are advised to avoid low-lying, flood-prone areas, such as rivers and canals, and should monitor local media for possible flood warnings and emergency broadcasts. Clients should anticipate disruptions to road travel and the provision of public utilities in flood-affected areas.