On 18 March, the Eastern Cape is under a yellow level 2 weather warning as issued by the SA Weather Service (SAWS).
The warning, valid from 12:00 until 23:59.
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Level 2 weather warning issued
The weather warning indicates the possibility of severe thunderstorms in the eastern parts of the province.
A surface trough combined with upper-air perturbations is expected to cause thunderstorms, and higher instabilities in the area may lead to their severity.
The thunderstorms may bring hail, heavy downpours, and strong winds, leading to localised damage to infrastructure, settlements, property, and vehicles.
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Heavy downpours may also cause localised flooding and traffic disruptions, posing a danger to livelihoods and livestock.
There may be localised short-term disruptions to electricity supply due to falling trees blocking major roads.
Large hail may cause damage to infrastructure and create dangerous driving conditions.
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SAFETY WHILE DRIVING IN THE RAIN
Arrive Alive has issued some tips when driving in severe weather.
- To keep a safe distance from the vehicle ahead of you, increase the three-second rule to five-six seconds.
- Slow down if it is raining and the roads are wet. Remove your foot from the accelerator and gradually reduce your speed.
- Never apply the brakes abruptly as this may cause the car to skid.
- Slow down and be prepared to move to the left shoulder if an oncoming vehicle is overtaking from the opposite direction and will not be able to do so safely.
- Only move towards the shoulder if you can see 150m ahead of you clearly. Keep in mind that pedestrians may be walking on the shoulder to avoid mud on the road’s surface.
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- Be cautious of oil patches. Do not slam on the brakes; instead, steer through. Patches will be small in most cases.
- Before taking a bend, especially a sharp bend, always shift into a lower gear. As you approach the bend, your speed should be at its slowest, and both hands should be on the steering wheel. When driving around a bend, this slow in/fast out technique gives you the most control.
- Double your normal following distance from 3 seconds to 6 seconds to increase your space cushion.
- Switch on your headlights.
- Other vehicles in the rear and in blind spots should be avoided because they are difficult to see through rain-splattered windows.
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