Heavy rain and flash flooding alert for New Year's Day
Heavy rainfall leading to flash flooding can be expected in Gauteng, parts of the North West Province and the Free State on Tuesday.
The South African Weather service issued a warning for heavy rain in Gauteng until noon, with a danger of localised flooding expected over the City of Tshwane, Mogale City, the City of Johannesburg, Ekurhuleni and in places in the West Rand.
Similar conditions were forecast for the North West province until 8pm on Tuesday, with flooding possible in the Bojanala district municipality.
Johannesburg will reach a maximum temperature of 21˚C, Cape Town 25˚C, Durban 32˚C and Port Elizabeth 26˚C. Graaff-Reinet in the Eastern Cape and Upington in the Northern Cape will swelter at 39˚C.
The weather service issued a warning for dangerous fire conditions in parts of the Northern Cape and the Central Karoo.
Tips to negotiate flooded roads from the Automobile Association:
- Obey authorities and emergency personnel who tell you to avoid driving on a specific road. If a road has been closed, obey the closure, and use the alternative route.
- Do not try and cross a body of water, even if you think you can make it, as the water may be deeper than you think, and the road may have eroded since you last used it.
- If there is a risk you will be caught in a flood, pull off the road and look for higher ground.
- If you do pull off, make sure you leave enough space for emergency vehicles to pass you.
- If you have no alternative but to drive through a body of water, drive as slowly as possible in first gear, with both hands on the steering wheel. This will give your car the necessary traction to move forward. Driving fast may result in aquaplaning.
- Ensure you are as visible as possible. Switch on your headlights.
- If your car is being surrounded by water, unfasten your seatbelt (and those of any children with you), unlock your doors, and open your windows. If water starts entering through the windows, get out of the vehicle and wade to the nearest point of safer higher ground. Remember, you are more important than your car.
- If your car is suddenly submerged and your windows aren’t already open, try and break a window and swim to the nearest point of safety.
- If you are caught in a flood, be patient and remain calm. The AA, and emergency services will get you but there may be delays as they have to negotiate the same hazards.
- Be especially cautious at night, or when visibility is low.