Kenya: Weatherman Warns of Heavy Weekend Rains, Strong Winds

21 January 2021

Kenyans should brace themselves for more rains in the month of January, the weatherman has said.

This comes at a time when there is a resurgence of desert locusts, which are expected risk food security as the heavy rains will trigger the growth of vegetation in arid areas, making the pests to reproduce.

The Kenya Meteorological Department (KMD), in a newly released statement, gave a warning of heavy rains and strong winds which will be experienced on Friday and Saturday.

"Heavy rainfall of more than 20mm in 24 hours is expected over the western, central, south eastern and north eastern parts of the country on Friday January 22," said the statement signed by KMD Director Stella Aura.

The heavy rains are expected to continue on Saturday over the highlands west of the Rift Valley, south eastern lowlands and highlands east of the Rift Valley.

Areas to be affected are Migori, Homa Bay, Siaya, Kisumu, Kisii, Kericho, Bomet, Narok, Kiambu, Nyandarua, Nyeri, Murang'a and Embu.

Meru, Kirinyaga, Tharaka Nithi, Kitui, Machakos, Makueni, Tana River, Garissa, Wajir, Isiolo, Samburu, Marsabit and Turkana will also be affected by the rains whose intensity is likely to reduce on Sunday, January 24.

Floods warning

KMD has warned residents in the mentioned areas to lookout for potential floods and strong winds.

"Floodwaters may appear in places where it has not rained heavily especially downstream," the statement said.

Kenyans have also been advised to avoid driving through, walking in or moving in open trenches and also avoid sheltering under trees to minimise exposure to lightning strikes.

January is typically a dry month, but this has been interrupted by unseasonal rains especially in western Kenya and in the Rift Valley.

Welcome relief

The rains are a welcome relief to farmers who have not harvested their crops which they planted last year.

The Coast will experience sunny days and partly cloudy nights most of this week while a few areas may receive light morning showers towards the end of the forecast period.

Strong winds are expected during the period, Ms Aura warned, which may blow off roofs, uproot trees and cause structural damages.

The rainfall is likely to reduce its intensity on Sunday January 24.

Last week, the Famine Early Warnings Systems Network, supported by USAID, warned of a decline in food security across Kenya.

Most of those affected will be people and livestock in eastern and northern Kenya, who will need relief by May.

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