Tropical depression Chalane weakens and passes

Tropical depression Chalane, which was expected to hit most parts of Zimbabwe this week has weakened and passed, the Meteorological Services Department (MSD) said Thursday morning.

The cyclone which later downgraded into a tropical depression, was expected to hit the country on December 30 into the New Year resulting in moderate to heavy rains of more than 50 millimetres within 24 hours.

The government, local authorities and the Civil Protection Unit have been on high alert for the potential disaster, with people in high risk areas such as Manicaland having been evacuated.

However, the MSD has since announced that the risk posed by Chalane has become minimal.

“Tropical depression Chalane has greatly weakened and is now passed,” said the MSD in a statement.

“We continue to monitor specific areas to assess the rainfalls and downstream effects. While light rains, cloudy and windy conditions are projected, we will continue to assess and advise in liaison with the Department of Civil Protection for the safety of the public.”

The highest stage Chalane reached, according to the MSD, was a tropical storm and not a cyclone.

The MSD however said people should still watch out for flooded rivers, light rain and moderate winds, collapse of huts, houses and trees due to excessive moisture.

“Never attempt to cross fast-flowing or flooded rivers and streams whether walking or driving. Stay indoors wherever possible,” said the MSD.

“Cooperate with members of the civil protection committee for your safety. If you urgently need to travel, take caution on the roads as roads may be slippery and contain hidden dangers covered by water including fallen trees, utility poles and live wires.”

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