19 December 2012

Tanzania: Weather Updates On Cell Phones

THE Tanzania Meteorological Agency (TMA) has gone online, enabling people to access updates on real time weather conditions through mobile phones.

The TMA Director General, Dr Agnes Kijazi, said in Dar es Salaam that to start with, the service will be accessible to Vodacom customers only as many more mobile service providers are expected to join in the near future.

"We have started with real time weather where people will be able to receive updates in all major towns and cities through text messages but in the future, we will include small towns," she said.

Dr Kijazi noted further that the service was vital in enabling many people get informed over weather conditions straight through their mobile phones and that all the updates and weather breaking news will be sent as they occur.

She explained that the move aimed at bringing to reality the agency's commitment to make use of technological developments in order to ensure timely relaying of weather information. "Currently, the channels used to relay weather updates do not get to many people as expected.

It is, therefore, better to make use of mobile phones for such an activity since almost everybody has one," she said. The TMA boss said the development will also be helpful to those travelling by road, air and water in understanding weather conditions of their destinations and on the way.

Vodacom Tanzania Head of Brand Communication and Marketing, Mr Kelvin Twissa, said the partnership with TMA has come with great joy and that the company was committed in ensuring best, quality and reliable services.

"The mobile communication sector has greatly grown in the country due to the need for individuals to keep in touch. Through this partnership, the challenge of relaying weather updates has now been solved," he said.

Mr Twissa added that to get the weather updates, individuals are advised to type Wthr and region then send to 15588. In another development, Dr Kijazi noted that the current rain season will end by the end of this month and in some parts of the country it will go up to April, next year.

She added that the trend shows that rains will continue at normal measurements and that there are no fears of abnormal rains in the country for the rest of the season.

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