Malawi Prepares for Tropical Cyclone Freddy's Impact
DCCMS has issued warning updates in preparation for Tropical Cyclone Freddy's (TCF) expected impact on most parts of southern Malawi, writes Winston Mwale.
Malawi-The Department of Climate Change and Meteorological Services (DCCMS) has issued warning updates in preparation for Tropical Cyclone Freddy's (TCF) expected impact on most parts of southern Malawi.
As of Sunday, March 12, 2023, the DCCMS projected a 100 percent possibility of TCF triggering rains exceeding 150 mm, accompanied by damaging winds and a high likelihood of flooding.
The areas to be highly impacted are Chikwawa, Nsanje, Mulanje, Thyolo, Chiradzulu, Phalombe, Mwanza, and Blantyre, along with parts of Neno, Zomba, and some Lakeshore districts.
In response to the projected impact, the Department of Disaster Management Affairs (DoDMA) in collaboration with various humanitarian partners, has been coordinating preparedness and response interventions.
The interventions include the sensitization of communities in districts at risk, the prepositioning of the National Search and Rescue (S&R) team, and the setting up of a national Emergency Operation Centre (EOC) to facilitate coordination of preparedness and response interventions.
Relief items have also been stockpiled in the Humanitarian Staging Area in Bangula, Blantyre DoDMA warehouse, and in some districts for the effective and efficient provision of relief items in affected areas.
Charles Kalemba, the Commissioner for Disaster Management Affairs, urges the public to avoid crossing flooded rivers and streams.
He notes that "the threat of floods [is] getting higher with each passing hour" and advises the public to stay informed regarding TCF and any related developments.
District councils continue to sensitize communities and are in constant contact with Area and Village Civil Protection Committees for the provision of situational updates.
All councils at risk have activated clusters with Chikwawa and Nsanje Districts specifically setting up EOCs for enhanced coordination.
District councils have reported experiencing rains and strong winds in most areas, with Chididi in Nsanje recording the highest rainfall amounts of slightly over 100mm. So far, no damages have been reported.