Tornadoes hit parts of KwaZulu-Natal

 ·4 Jun 2024

A destructive storm swept through Tongaat, parts of the Durban CBD, and Ballito in KwaZulu-Natal on Monday, causing extensive damage to numerous buildings, shelters and infrastructure.

The storm brought with it at least two tornadoes amid heavy rains, strong winds, and hailstorms.

Chief forecaster for disaster risk reduction at the South African Weather Service (SAWS) Kevin Rae said on Monday that “KwaZulu-Natal experienced an outbreak of at least two tornadoes affecting Newcastle, Utrecht, Ballito and Tongaat.” 

The SAWS reported that the emergence of at least two tornadoes in KwaZulu-Natal were the expected peak of severe weather phase that started over the weekend.

This extreme weather was anticipated to dissipate by Monday night. Ahead of this, on Friday, the SAWS released an immediate alert about the forecasted formation of an upper-air cut-off low system.

“This system was expected to develop a range of severe weather, including severe storms, heavy rain and flooding, heavy snowfall as well as very rough seas around the southern ocean and coastal areas,” said Rae.

Gift of the Givers teams have been dispatched to assist affected communities. “Over 1,200 people are displaced as disaster risk management and Gift of the Givers teams commence assessments,” said the organisation.

Image: Arrive Alive

Those affected were placed in shelters. Power and cellphone towers were down and many roads inaccessible on Monday night. Rae advised motorists to stay clear of roads and mountainous passes.

Read: 5 important things happening in South Africa today

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