Tropical cyclone Eloise lands in Mozambique and loses energy By Reuters

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© Reuters. A view of fallen branches on a muddy road after Cyclone Eloise in Beira

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JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – Tropical cyclone Eloise landed in Mozambique early Saturday and hit the coastal city of Beira with large gusts of wind and heavy rainfall, but lost strength over the course of the year, a South African weather official said.

“Eloise landed around 2:30 in the morning with wind speeds of 160 kilometers per hour,” said Mbazhi Maliage, a forecaster with the South African Weather Service.

Cars were submerged in water, walls of some low-lying buildings collapsed and areas of land were flooded in the city of Beira, posts on Twitter showed. Reuters was unable to independently verify the authenticity of the contributions.

Power supplies were turned off when the cyclone damaged power lines and uprooted some power poles, a source from utility EDM said.

The rains had now subsided and EDM was assessing the damage, the source said, while internet and phone lines in several coastal and inland counties around Beira were also down.

The World Meteorological Organization said in a Twitter post that the cyclone had weakened into a tropical storm and would cause heavy rains in parts of Zimbabwe, South Africa and Botswana.

Maliage said the storm is expected to weaken further as it penetrates northern parts of South Africa.

The WMO had upgraded the storm, which was driven by the warm waters of the Indian Ocean of the Mozambican Channel, to a tropical cyclone with a strength that corresponds to a category 2 storm.

Category 2 strength – on a five-point scale – relates to hurricanes with a maximum wind speed of 154 to 177 km / h.

Around 3,000 people had been evacuated from the Buzi district outside the port city of Beira, the National Institute for Disaster Risk Management and Reduction (INGD) in Mozambique announced on local television on Friday.

The WMO and INGD did not immediately respond to email requests for comment.

In March 2019, Beira was devastated by Cyclone Idai, which killed more than 1,000 people in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe.

Eloise won’t be as bad as Idai but still wreak havoc in Mozambique, Maliage said.

“By tomorrow it will be a tropical depression overland. By that time the speed will be 60 km / h,” she said, but added that there will be showers in the northern provinces of Limpopo, Mpumalanga and KwaZulu-Natal from late afternoon will bring in South Africa.

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