Lightning kills one in Hippo Valley

The 2020-21 farming season started badly in Chiredzi after a 21-year-old Hippo Valley man was struck and killed by lighting on Sunday night this week.

BY GARIKAI MAFIRAKUREVA

According to a police report, the deceased, Herbert Mukwetura of Chishamiso village, was in the company of four workmates on their way to work at Tongaat Huletts Hippo Valley Mill.

Mukwetura died on the spot, while his colleagues were immediately rushed to Hippo Valley Medical Centre for treatment, where they were said to be in a stable condition.

The report further states that the five were struck by a bolt of lightning on a flyover on their way to the mill. These were the first rains in Chiredzi.
Violent thunderstorms characterised by strong winds have so far destroyed infrastructure and a number of residents were left homeless in various provinces across the country including Gwanda since the onset of the rain season.

In Chipinge, roofs of two classroom blocks at Chisavanye Primary School in ward 22 of Musikavanhu constituency were blown away two weeks ago.
Climate experts predict higher than average rainfall in the 2020-21 cropping season.

According to the latest Global Agricultural Geo-monitoring Initiative global outlook report, Southern Africa may receive more rainfall compared to the 2019-20 farming season pointing towards greater chances of a La Nina.

The Meteorological Services Department has since issued a warning to the public about weather-related hazards including floods, hailstorms, and lightning among others as the rainy season starts.

Having experienced Cyclone Idai in 2019, climate change and disaster preparedness now becomes important themes for discussion in Zimbabwe.
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