Cyclone Hellen no longer a threat

Contrary to initial forecasts Cyclone Hellen did not turn back into the Mozambique Channel after hitting Madagascar on Monday morning, and no longer poses a threat.

The US Navy’s Joint Typhoon Warning Centre had predicted that Hellen, after striking a glancing blow against the western coast of Madagascar, would turn west across the Mozambique, making landfall in the central Mozambican province of Zambezia on Friday.

However, the cyclone underwent rapid weakening on Monday. On Sunday night, the cyclone’s maximum sustained wind speed was over 230 kilometres an hour, but by midday Monday the wind speed had fallen to 80 kilometres an hour.

Far from turning back to sea, Hellen continued into north-western Madagascar, weakening continually. By midday Tuesday the cyclone had dissipated.

It had brought heavy rain to coastal Madagascar, and caused some damage to vulnerable buildings, but the impact was nowhere near as devastating as had been feared.

Post published in: Africa News

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