Storm warning: Disruptive snowfall, rain heading for Western Cape
Another major winter storm is expected to make landfall in the Western Cape early on Monday morning and is expected to continue until Tuesday afternoon.
The South African Weather Service (SAWS) is warning that disruptive rainfall can be expected in the City of Cape Town, Stellenbosch, Theewaterskloof and Witzenberg with between 30mm to 40 mm can be expected for Monday as well as gale force winds and dangerous coastal conditions with large waves expected along the shorelines.
The Minister of Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning, Anton Bredell says very cold conditions are also expected with a strong possibility of disruptive snowfall which could be as deep as 15cm over the highest mountain ranges of the province.
“The cold weather poses a real threat to vulnerable livestock and crops across large parts of the province. We also urge people in the rural areas especially, to remain indoors as much as possible. In the City of Cape Town the risk of continued flooding in low-lying areas continues. Some of these areas - particularly informal settlements that have sprung up within existing wetlands and retention dams since the start of the March 2020 Covid-19 lockdown - remain severely waterlogged.”
Bredell says the Western Cape Disaster Management Centre (WCDMC) as well as all regional disaster centres and the City of Cape Town disaster services are on standby.
Members of the public are urged - in the event of any emergency - to contact the emergency services immediately. The easiest number to remember is 112. This is a tollfree number and can be dialled from any cell phone.
Additional regional numbers for reporting emergencies in the Western Cape:
- City of Cape Town - 107 or 021 480 7700 and 080 911 4357
- Overberg - 028 425 1690
- West Coast - 022 433 8700
- Garden Route - 044 805 5071
- Central Karoo – 023 449 8000
- Cape Winelands – 021 886 9244 / 021 887 4446
Bad weather related tip sheet
How can I prepare for bad weather events?
- Identify the risks in your local area.
- Report blocked drains and service disruptions promptly
- Prepare a home emergency plan and identify risks around your home.
- Make sure cell phones are charged before going to bed.
- Remove leaves and debris (from downpipes or gutters or street gullies) or any other items that can increase the risk of flooding in your area.
- Have an evacuation plan. Everyone in your family should know where to go to find shelter.
- Prepare an emergency toolkit. This may include items such as candles and matches, drinking water, a multi-tool, whistle and a list of emergency contact numbers.
What should I do during a flooding?
- Monitor current flood warnings. Listen to the radio for emergency warnings, evacuation advice and weather updates.
- Avoid entering floodwater unless it is necessary, and never underestimate the strength of floodwater, even if you are inside a vehicle.
- Follow all instructions from emergency authorities.
- Turn off all electricity and water and take your cell phone with you.
- Assist elderly and disabled neighbours where possible.
- Contact the authorities as soon as possible.
Further winter weather tips:
- (When moving around outdoors) dress in warm brightly coloured wet weather clothing.
- If caught unawares by strong wind, barricade windows with wooded panels or strips (or furniture if needs be).
- If ordered to evacuate do so immediately and in an orderly fashion.
- Listen to the radio or TV for warnings and obey the instructions from disaster management officers.
Spokesperson for the Minister of Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning, Anton Bredell
Mobile: 084 583 1670
Telephone: 021 483 2820