News / South Africa

Steven Tau
2 minute read
10 Jan 2017
8:09 am

Severe thunderstorms expected in some parts of SA

Steven Tau

Recent heavy falls also saw levels at the Vaal Dam rise by 3.9% over 24 hours.

A tornado was seen forming during a Standerton thunderstorm on Saturday. Picture: Standerton Advertiser.

Following the heavy downpours that were experienced in Gauteng and several other parts of the country last weekend, warmer and partly cloudy conditions are expected to persist, at least until Wednesday, the South African Weather Service said on Tuesday.

Speaking to The Citizen, forecaster Wayne Venter said residents in Gauteng can expect a more sunny day as the day progresses with a slight improvement in daytime temperatures.

“We are only expecting a small chance of showers and thundershowers mainly over the central and northern parts of the province on Tuesday afternoon (today), but no rainfall is forecast for the entire province on Wednesday,” he said.

However, the greater chances of rainfall, according to Venter, for Tuesday can be expected in parts of the Northern Cape, the interior of the Eastern Cape, parts of North West as well as the southwestern parts of the Free State.

“We have also issued a watch for the possibility of severe thunderstorms in those provinces later on Tuesday,” Venter said.

Meanwhile, over the weekend heavy rainfall also resulted in flash flooding in some parts and saw some areas recording rainfall amounts exceeding 100mm.

This was the first above-aberage rainfall patterns experienced since the start of the current summer season and it was welcomed by many, considering the country has been going through a serious drought situation, which also saw dam levels in the country dropping to alarming lows.

At one point last year, the Vaal Dam, which supplies water mainly to Gauteng, saw its levels dropping to around the 25mm mark, something that prompted authorities to commence a replenishing exercise of the dam.

The exercise started from November 7 and was completed on December 22; it meant some water had to be released from the Sterkfontein Dam which is used as a reserve storage.

The recent heavy falls saw levels at the Vaal Dam rising by 3.9% over a period of 24 hours.

The levels there as of Monday are now standing at 49.56%.

More heavy falls are expected to return on Thursday.