NOTE: This article is edited with updates pertaining to the
The latest satellite imagery from Sat24.com shows moisture already developing throughout the Northern Cape, which seems to be from the initial stages of the developing low over Namibia.
On the heels of Dineo, we may be in for some more severe weather in parts of South Africa this week. We’ve been monitoring the forecasts for the past few days now and have been intrigued by a large trough which has been forecast to develop over Namibia for a while now. This trough is now bringing showers to parts of Namibia and is expected to deepen over the next few days as it drifts slowly eastward. The effects of these weather systems being shown on the models are likely to be experienced across majority of the central and northern parts of the country, with heavy rain and subsequent flooding being the highest concern.
The latest model forecasts show peak rainfall totals exceeding 90mm in 24 hours possible on Wednesday. The primary band of moisture will likely first bring heavy rains to parts of the Northern Cape and North West province, as well as stretching into the interior of the country from Monday, before progressing northward and to the east. The South African Weather Service have already released an update to their Day 3 – Day 5 watches, showing the potential for heavy rains and flooding for both the Northern Cape, North West Province and Free State. We wouldn’t be surprised to see Gauteng included in this by tomorrow, considering the models do suggest the potential for some heavy falls for the province, particular on Wednesday.
It is worth mentioning that these types of systems are often quite difficult to predict in behaviour, and with some of the situations still being 4-5 days out, there could still be significant changes in the forecasts. However, at this stage it seems a safe bet that we will see widespread rain, potentially very heavy falls across much of the country this week. Many people up in Mpumalanga have been asking for rain, and there is the possibility that the province may get some good rains from this system, should it continue to develop as the models have it forecast. However, the heaviest of rain for the province are indicated near day 5, and thus at this stage are the most unreliable to call.
Below are the GFS model forecasts from Tuesday through Friday, showing what the currently predicted 24 hour rainfall values are. These are, as mentioned above, subject to change. However, it gives a good perspective of the potential significant rain event that may be encountered.
Follow us for more information on the development of these weather systems, and stay tuned to the South African Weather Service for updates in the official warnings and watches associated with severe weather events.