Tropical Cyclone Freddy hammers Mozambique for second time

Cyclone Freddy has hit Mozambique for a second time in two weeks, killing at least one person, ripping roofs off houses and prompting a lockdown in one port town, according to a resident and local media.

Freddy, on track to become the longest-lasting cyclone on record, started sweeping onshore by 10pm local time (20:00 GMT) on Saturday, satellite data showed, after hours of battering the southern African coast with rain.

It was the second time the cyclone has struck Mozambique since it was named after being spotted near Indonesia on February 6. At least 27 people died the last time the storm pummelled the region.

According to the World Meteorological Organization, Freddy, which has swirled in the southern Indian Ocean for some 34 days, is set to become the longest-lasting tropical cyclone on record. The previous record was held by a 31-day hurricane in 1994.

After forming off northwestern Australia in the first week of February, Freddy crossed the entire southern Indian Ocean and battered Madagascar from February 21 before reaching Mozambique on February 24.

More than 171,000 people were affected when the cyclone swept through southern Mozambique last month, bringing heavy rains and floods that damaged crops and destroyed houses. OCHA has put its death toll at 27 so far — 10 in Mozambique and 17 in Madagascar.

Oceans absorb much of the heat from greenhouse gas emissions and when warm seawater evaporates, its heat energy is transferred to the atmosphere, fuelling more destructive storms.

Related Articles

Back to top button