SA warned of heavy rains this weekend

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South African farmers and their employees should take heed of warnings of highly likely widespread heavy rains for the weekend of 18 to 20 January 2013. The SA Weather Service has urged the public to be wary of potential flash-flooding as a result of the rains expected in North West, Gauteng, the eastern Free State, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo and Mpumalanga. bSAWS explained that the expected heavy rains would be caused by an intense low pressure moving in from Botswana.

Botswana, Zimbabwe, Swaziland and southern Mozambique were also likely to be affected by the anticipated adverse weather conditions. “As a consequence of heavy rains, river and stream systems will begin flowing strongly,” said Kenosi Machepa, a SAWS spokesperson. “The public are therefore urged not to try to cross rivers and streams that are in flood, irrespective of whether they are on foot or in a vehicle. People living in areas close to rivers or within flood plains must also monitor the rising water levels.”

Various parts of SA have already had to bear the brunt of extreme weather conditions this summer, with resulting loss of life and extensive damage to property. SAWS added that parts of Mpumalanga and Limpopo that had already experienced heavy rains earlier this week and where rivers were already flowing high, would be particularly susceptible to flooding should the predicted weather manifest.

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SAWS urged the public to keep abreast of weather warnings by logging on to or by following @SAWeatherServic on Twitter.