31 January 2013

Tanzania: TMA Issues Caution Over Tropical Storm

People living in high risk areas, users of land and sea, and the disaster management institutions have been advised to brace for tropical storm known as 'cyclone felleng' which might hit some part of the country soon.

A statement issued by the Tanzania Meteorological Agency (TMA) on Wednesday noted that the powerful storm was noted over the Northeast of Madagascar gathering strength from moisture rich air in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Some of the areas that might be affected and which should be on high alert include some parts of Rukwa, Iringa, Mbeya, Njombe, Ruvuma, Morogoro, lindi, Pwani, Mtwara regions and some neighboring areas.

"Updates regarding the mentioned Tropical cyclone will be issued when necessary," the statement read in part. The alert from TMA warns that heavy rainfall of above 50mm in 24 hours will be received, cautioning those living in high risk areas and relevant authorities to be on alert.

Information from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) web, its Aqua satellite captured an image of Cyclone Felleng showing strong thunderstorms, with the western edge of the storm approaching Madagascar.

The United States Department of State, Bureau of Diplomatic Security has has posted an emergency message alert for US citizen in residing and traveling in Madagascar to carry their travel document with them.

They should also contact friends and family in the US with updates about their whereabouts and well-being. The message on the website noted that the US embassy will continue to monitor the storm and will issue update messages as necessary and those in affected area are urged to locate shelter, monitor media reports and follow all official instructions.

"It is confirmed that Felleng has already reached Category 1. At this time Felleng is not predicted to make landfall in Madagascar, though heavy rains, flooding, and tropical storm-force winds could still affect parts of the east coast, especially the area between Sambava and Toamasina," the message read in part.

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