Record breaking Cyclone Freddy make second landfall, batters Mozambique and heads towards Malawi

– the wind was very strong into the night, there was a lot of destruction, trees fallen down, roofs blown off, UNICEF spokesperson Guy Taylor said.

John Cassim

HARARE, ZIMBABWE – At least one person is reported to have died in Mozambique following a second landfall of Tropical Cyclone Freddy over the weekend bringing the total number of fatalities to 28.

More than 171 000 people were affected a fortnight ago when Cyclone Freddy pounced on the southern parts of Mozambique, killing 27 people in Mozambique and Madagascar.

The United Nations Office of the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) estimates that at least half a million people are at risk of being affected in Mozambique this time around.

“The winds are much stronger, in the first landfall they were around 148km/h to 200km/h but the only thing that we are concerned about is the ongoing rainfall, most parts of this region are flooded especially the countryside.

That poses a greater risk of an outbreak of another water borne disease like cholera,” Guy Taylor Spokesperson of UNICEF Mozambique stated.

After passing the port town of Quelimane, the storm continued inland towards the southern tip of neighboring Malawi.

By Sunday afternoon serious flooding and heavy winds were reported in the tourism resort district of Mulanje.

Heavy rains and flooding also resulted in blown off roofs, power outages and flooding in Blantyre.

Meanwhile in Mozambique the national power company Electricidade de Mozambique said electricity had been restored in most areas except in areas like Milange, Lugela, Maganja da Costa, Namanjavira and parts of the city of Mocuba.

After swirling for 35 days, Tropical Cyclone Freddy is likely to have broken the record for the longest lasting tropical cyclone with the previous record held by the 31-day hurricane in 1994 according to the World Meteorological Organisation.

Freddy has also set a record for the highest accumulated cyclone energy, a measure of the storm’s strength over time of any southern hemisphere storm in history according to the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Freddy hit the eastern coast of Madagascar on February 21 before slamming into Mozambique a few days later. 

This brought torrential rains, destructive winds and flooding which has destroyed houses and affected nearly two million people.

Freddy then looped back out towards the Mozambique Channel, gaining energy from the warm waters and headed towards the southern coast of Mozambique 

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