By Duncan Mlanjira
Department of Climate Change and Meteorological Services says the Indian Ocean has developed Tropical Cyclone named Belna and that might have an affect on Malawi as it is expected to enhance rainfall activities in Central and Northern areas of the country and suppress rainfall activities over the South.
A statement from the Department says the cyclone has developed in the Indian Ocean, to the north of Madagascar.
“As on Saturday 7th December 2019, Tropical Cyclone Belna was located at latitude 9.3 degrees south and longitude 48.7 degrees east in the Indian Ocean, a distance of about 1,300km from Malawi border.
“The cyclone has a central pressure value of 982hpa, and is projected to reach the category of Intense Tropical Cyclone as it moves southwards in the Mozambican Channel close to the western coastline of Madagascar at a speed of about 10 kilometers per hour.
“By 8th December, 2019, the cyclone will be positioned at latitude 11.5 degrees South and longitude 47.0 degrees east in the Mozambican Channel close to the western coastline of Madagascar.
“By 9th December, 2019, the cyclone will be positioned at latitude 14.1 degrees South and longitude 46.1 degrees east in the Mozambican Channel close to the western coastline of Madagascar.
“Tropical Belna is expected to make a landfall over southern Madagascar on 12 December 2019 where it is expected to weaken and die.”
The statement also said a tropical cyclone in Indian Ocean, also called typhoon in Pacific Ocean or hurricane in Atlantic Ocean, is an intense circular storm that originates over warm tropical oceans and is characterized by low atmospheric pressure, high winds, and heavy rain.
“The main effects of tropical cyclones include heavy rains, strong wind, and large storm surges at landfall.
“The public is advised to continue following weather updates from the Department of Climate Change and Meteorological Services as monitoring of the movement of Cyclone Belna and weather development over the country continues to be kept safe from any weather related threats,” says the statement from Jolamu Nkhokwe,
Director of Climate Change and Meteorological Services Ministry of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining Blantyre