Gauteng warned to prepare for heavy rain

JHB weather feb 8 THE STAR Joburg residents are to expect plummeting temperatures this week. Picture: Karen Sandison/ The Star

Johannesburg - Joburg residents will get a reprieve from the excessive heat as cooler conditions are expected to be brought on by rainfall of up to 80 percent this week.

The South African Weather Service said although temperatures in both Joburg and Pretoria were expected to peak in the mid-30s on Monday, rainy and cloudy conditions would prevail for the rest of the week.

Forecaster Lebogang Mashile said “temperatures will also drop significantly and peak in the low- to mid-20s”.

Mashile said although there was no hail warning, the possibility of localised flooding was likely.

In recent weeks, rainfall in the province has wreaked havoc and even claimed the life of 6-year-old Angel Sibanda, who drowned when she was washed away by flash floods in Diepsloot, north of Joburg, last month.

Her body was found in the Jukskei River by a fisherman about 10km from the stream in which she was washed away.

Angel’s funeral service was held on Saturday.

The downpours have also caused havoc on the roads, with several collisions and fatalities being reported.

On its website, the Joburg Roads Agency (JRA) explained that flash floods could occur within minutes or hours of excessive rainfall.

“This may be caused by a blocked stormwater drain or a dam failure, or a severe and heavy rainstorm,” the agency said.

The JRA warned motorists to refrain from driving through flood waters, which could be strong enough to wash away a car.

Those who find themselves outdoors when flash floods occur are advised to get to higher ground and to stay away from ditches or dry river beds.

“If a vehicle stalls in water, leave it immediately,” the agency said.

People should also never attempt to run across flooding water when the water is higher than their ankles.

karishma.dipa@inl.co.za

@Karishma_Dipa

The Star

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