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Very chilly, wet and windy weather to persist over Cape provinces as cold front arrives

The first in a succession of such systems, says SA Weather Service

The weather service issued a level 6 orange warning for disruptive rainfall expected to affect particularly the Cape Town CBD and Metropole and the Winelands area. File photo.
The weather service issued a level 6 orange warning for disruptive rainfall expected to affect particularly the Cape Town CBD and Metropole and the Winelands area. File photo.
Image: 123rf

A well-developed and fast-moving cold front is expected to arrive over the Western Cape on Wednesday, introducing very cold, rainy weather to all three Cape provinces.

The South African Weather Service (Saws) announced on Tuesday strong, gusty westerly winds over the interior of the Western Cape are expected to accompany the passage of the cold front.

“Given the dramatic drop in temperature, combined with persistent wet and windy conditions in the days ahead, small stock farmers are strongly encouraged to take mitigative action at an early stage to prevent stock losses due to exposure,” it said.

The weather service said the arrival of the cold front on Wednesday would be the first in a succession of such systems expected to pass through the Cape provinces in the week ahead and on an almost daily basis.

“Cold, windy conditions with occasional showers will be a persistent feature of the weather over the southern half of the country, continuing until well after the long weekend,” said Saws.

The weather service said the latest output from numeric weather prediction (NWP) models suggests heavy rainfall may occur over parts of the Western Cape on Wednesday, persisting on Thursday.

“Typically, the presence of higher topography and especially mountainous areas tends to markedly enhance local rainfall through orographic uplift.

“The western, or windward, side of hills and mountains of the Western and Northern Cape can therefore expect to receive upwards of 100mm of rainfall on Wednesday, with further significant rainfall around 50mm or more persisting on Thursday.”

The weather service said the NWP model has prompted it to issue a level 6 orange warning for disruptive rainfall expected to affect particularly the Cape Town CBD and Metropole and the winelands area.

“Strong, gusty winds, possibly gusting beyond gale-force, are anticipated over much of the interior of Western Cape and Eastern Cape tomorrow and Thursday. High-sided vehicles travelling along major roads and highways could be at risk of being severely buffeted by crosswinds. Drivers of such vehicles are encouraged to reduce speed and exercise caution,” Saws said.

Saws said strong to gale force winds are expected to occur along the Western Cape coast between Saldanha Bay and Plettenberg Bay on Wednesday and Thursday, combined with very rough sea conditions with waves of 4.5m to 5m which will lead to difficulty in navigation at sea and may cause problems for small marine vessels.

TimesLIVE


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