NEWS

Eight People Killed In Storm That Is Causing Havoc Across The Western Cape

The storm that hit on Tuesday night is expected to reach gale force on Wednesday.

07/06/2017 07:23 SAST | Updated 07/06/2017 14:54 SAST
Mike Hutchings / Reuters

Eight people were killed, four of them in a fire caused by lightning, as a massive stormed raged in the Western Cape on Wednesday.

The four were killed in the blaze in Kraaifontein, Cape Town, disaster risk management confirmed and a 60-year-old man was killed when a home collapsed on him in Lavender Hill.

The storm that hit the Cape peninsula on Tuesday night has caused havoc across the City of Cape Town, damaging homes and causing electricity shortages.

According to TimesLive, warnings have been issued of gale force winds in excess of 90 km/h, 50 mm of rain in 24 hours and high seas as the storm coincides with spring tide.

The South African Weather Service warned residents to take special precautions, stay indoors and tie down their belongings outside.

The Western Cape provincial government closed schools, saying:

"While our rescue agencies are well equipped and prepared to handle disasters, we strongly advise people to stay off the roads and remain indoors. It is imperative that all measures are taken to avoid harm or loss of life. The work of the emergency rescue services will be made easier if the roads are clear of unnecessary traffic."

While flights in and out of Cape Town are still running on schedule, various roads have been closed with the Huguenot Tunnel on the N1 closed to trucks.

According to Eyewitness News (EWN), the City of Cape Town's disaster risk management says two people were injured in Lavender Hill when a house roof blew off.

The storm has reportedly blown away shacks in Macassar Village and Imizamo Yethu and damaged houses in Strand, Kalkfontein and Delft Mfuleni.

EWN reported that a tree fell on a block of flats in Plumstead but no injuries were reported. Power cables and trees have been uprooted in various parts of the city.