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Severe weather warning issued

Leave a comment / By: manifel / 15 January, 2021 15:21:46PM
Severe weather warning issued

Due to accumulated rainfall and expected rains in the next three days, contingency measures should be put in place to avoid likelihoods of negative impacts associated with increased rainfall, especially in disaster-prone areas, Rwanda Meteorology Agency has advised.

The advisory is in the announcement which shows that, from January 13 up to January 15, some parts of the country will face heavy rains compared to the other periods like these in the previous years. 

“Enhanced rainfall was predicted between 13th and 15th especially in the southwestern part of Rwanda,” the statement says. 

The weatherman has informed stakeholders and end-users that enhanced rainfall is expected to extend up to January 16, 2021. 

“Southwest of southern province and western province are expected to receive enhanced rainfall ranging between 20 to 50 mm per day during the next three days,” says the statement signed by Aimable Gahigi, the Director-General of Rwanda Meteorology Agency.

It indicates that expected rainfall is resulting from moisture advection from Indian Ocean which led to an increased moisture pattern over Rwanda.

“Due to accumulated rainfall and expected rains in three coming days, contingency measures should be put in place to avoid likelihoods of negative impacts associated with increased rainfall especially in disaster-prone areas,” reads the announcement.

The ministry of emergency management reiterated that the rains, from September last year, have been causing disasters across the country especially landslides, floods, hailstorms, windstorm and others which have destroyed infrastructure, crops, killed or injured people and damaged many others.

What is at high risk?

The ministry’s statement has warned that old houses penetrated with rainwater, houses in high-risk zones, and houses without rainwater harvesting systems, houses without drainage systems, houses along rivers, lakes and wetlands are at risk of disasters caused by heavy rains.

“We urge those in high-risk zones and houses expected to collapse to immediately relocate. Stakeholders should rehabilitate damaged infrastructure or put signals where they have been destroyed, rehabilitate drainages, harvest rainwater,” it reads.

Other recommended measures include quick intervention to help disaster victims, houses roofs tightening, covering water holes located in some homes among others.

Farmers have also been urged on constructing terraces to avoid erosion.

However, some farmers said they were affected by hailstorms which have no way of prevention.

Meanwhile, farmers in arable wetlands were already affected by the rains on the evening of January 13 immediately after heavy rains were announced.

Emmanuel Ndagijimana, the president of KOABIGA farmers’ cooperative growing vegetables in wetland in Kinyinya sector of Gasabo district said that besides 14 hectares of vegetables and maize that were damaged on January 7, more hectares were flooded on January 13.

“Yesterday heavy rains damaged more than five hectares of cabbages, amaranth French beans, eggplants, tomatoes and soya bean. We were not used to facing such rains during this month. If it goes on like this, we will count more losses,” he said.

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