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Don’t pack away winter clothes yet . . . windy, chilly weather to persist

Staff Reporter

Windy conditions are expected to persist in the Free State, the Cape provinces and the North-West, the South African Weather Service (SAWS) has warned.

A report compiled by SAWS forecasters Mkhushulwa William Msimanga and Samkelisiwe Thwala said the windy and chilly conditions experienced as the country entered the spring season on Tuesday are expected to persist until late Thursday.

It said gale force winds will also continue along most of the country’s coastal belt, before moderating later in the day.

“The cut-off low system will finally exit the country during Thursday, resulting in overall clearance of weather conditions,” said the SAWS report.

Most parts of the country are currently experiencing windy and chilly conditions as a result of a cut-off low pressure system.

The system, according to the report, also carries the potential for heavy rainfall, severe thunderstorms as well as strong gale force winds in some places.

“A cut-off low pressure system has started developing south-west of the country today (Tuesday), resulting in isolated to scattered showers and thunder showers in the central and southern parts of the country,” said the report.

“These include the Western Cape, Northern Cape, western parts of North-West, Free State as well the Eastern Cape provinces.

“Some of these storms are expected to become severe in places tonight, with the potential for strong damaging winds as well as large hail.”

Strong winds are also expected over most parts of the central interior, mainly in the North-West and the Free State as well as the Cape provinces.

SAWS said this will result in fire danger conditions over the western parts of the North-West, the eastern interior of the Northern Cape as well as the western and central parts of the Free State province.

Along the coasts, strong south-easterly to easterly winds may reach gale force speeds of up to 70 kilometres per hour from Table Bay and along the southern coastal belt up to Port Alfred.

“As a result of these persisting windy conditions, seas will deteriorate substantially with high seas and wave heights in excess of six metres can be expected from (Tuesday) evening between Cape Point and Plettenberg Bay.

“Tomorrow, Wednesday, the south-western parts of the country can expect heavy downpours with potential for flooding over the Cape Metropole areas, Overberg and in places over the Cape Winelands.”

SAWS says it will continue to monitor any further developments relating to this weather system and will issue subsequent updates as required.

Furthermore, the public is urged and encouraged to regularly follow the weather forecasts issued by SAWS on television and different radio stations.

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