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KZN residents warned to stay safe as team assesses tornado damage

Severe thunderstorms are expected after 20 homes were damaged by a tornado struck Utrecht at around 7 pm on Friday night.

Parts of the Watervaal Correctional Services facility, including 20 houses which were used to accommodate staff, were damaged. Picture: Arrive Alive/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG – KwaZulu-Natal's co-operative governance MEC Sipho Hlomuka has warned residents to be vigilant in the wake of yet another tornado which has struck the province.

At around 7pm on Friday night a tornado ripped through in Utrecht, an area between Newcastle and Dundee.

Parts of the Watervaal Correctional Services facility, including 20 houses which were used to accommodate staff, were damaged.

MEC Hlomuka immediately dispatched a disaster management team to the area.

He says they will decide on a way forward once the team have assessed the damage.

“The disaster management team is on site assessing the damage but also providing support to our people.”
This is the third tornado to hit the province recently.

Last month 23 people died as a result of weather related incidents in some parts of KZN.

The South African Weather Service has warned severe thunderstorms are expected around the province on Saturday.

Inclement weather conditions are expected to continue across the province, with the weatherservice issuing a warning for severe thunderstorms that bring the possibility of strong winds, hail and heavy downpours in parts of uThukela, uMzinyathi, uMgungundlovu, Amajuba, iLembe, King Cetshwayo Zululand and uMkhanyakude Districts.

Forecaster Wayne Venter said, “Today we do expect another round of severe storms in the area and north-eastern parts of KZN as well.”