Tanzania: TMA Warns of Heavy, Destructive Downpour

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By Hilda Mhagama, Daily News 

Dar es Salaam – As heavy downpour pounded many parts of the country’s central zone, the Tanzania Meteorological Authority (TMA) yesterday issued an advisory warning of the likelihood of more intense rain for the next few days.

The torrential rains which started Monday evening destroyed infrastructures and disrupted transport, with Mkange Bridge in Kilosa District in Morogoro-Dodoma highway washed out, thus, cutting communication between the two regions.

TMA’s Manager for Weather Forecasting Services, Mr Samuel Mbuya, told the ‘Daily News’, over the phone that the rains were the continuation of the onset of Masika (long and heaviest) rain season.

The meteorologist mentioned some of the regions which are likely to receive the rains starting today as Dar es Salaam, Arusha, Kilimanjaro, Manyara, Iringa, Njombe, Tanga, Morogoro, Coast, Unguja and Pemba Islands.

“The authority, thus, issues an advisory that there could be heavy rains which could disrupt transport and other economic activities. Some residential areas in low lying areas could as well be submerged due to flooding,” the authority further said on its website.

Mr Mbuya further advises members of the public to make close follow up on updates issued by the authority so that they can take required precautions.

Early last month, TMA issued a climate outlook for March-May Masika rain season which shows the likelihood of normal to above-normal rains in most parts of the country which may impact the livelihoods.

The outlook described the evolution of the climate systems and outlook for the next three month’s rain season, advisories and early warnings to various weather-sensitive sectors including agriculture and food security, livestock and wildlife, natural resources and tourism.

The Masika rainfall season is specific to areas of the north eastern highlands (Arusha, Manyara and Kilimanjaro regions), northern coast Dar es Salaam, Pwani (including Mafia island, Tanga regions, northern parts of Morogoro region, and Unguja and Pemba isles, Lake Victoria Basin (Kagera, Geita, Mwanza, Shinyanga, Simiyu and Mara regions) and the northern parts of Kigoma region.

The Agency said the rains, which will be of normal to above normal levels in most areas of the country, will result in various impacts that will require proper management systems to curb any threat to human beings.

TMA Director-General, Dr Agnes Kijazi told reporters that areas expected to receive normal to above-normal rains are likely to favour the production of crops, including those adaptive to excessive soil moisture conditions such as paddy.

“Pests and diseases are expected due to wetness and stagnant waters, livestock production together with their products such as milk are also expected to improve due to sufficient pasture and water to most parts,” she noted.

However, animal diseases such as rift valley fever, foot and mouth are likely to occur, she cautioned.

“Farmers are therefore advised to put in place soil erosion control structures and improve irrigation infrastructure.”

Resources 

Tanzania seasonal rainfall forecast :  Tanzania Rainfall outlook for March to May 2020

 

 

 

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