Watch: KwaZulu-Natal reeling from two tornado strikes

6 June 2024

By: Lloyd Phillips

It has been confirmed that at least two destructive tornados hit parts of KwaZulu-Natal on Monday.

Residents, including farmers, in different parts of KwaZulu-Natal were shocked when extreme weather on Monday afternoon morphed into two destructive tornados.

Social media has been inundated with photos and videos showing firstly a narrow tornado forming and then quickly running along mostly rural farmland between Newcastle and Utrecht in northern KwaZulu-Natal.

African Farming has been able to confirm that this particular tornado caused direct damage to a farm in that area.

Then, on Monday evening, a far larger and even more destructive tornado formed and ran for some time in the coastal areas of uThongati and Ballito north of Durban. 

From what African Farming has been able to piece together thus far, this latter tornado left citizens aghast at its size and power, the destruction it was causing during its lifespan and the widespread urban and rural devastation it left in its wake.

As yet unconfirmed reports are that a poultry farm was also a victim of this particular tornado.

While African Farming is in the process of gathering more information about the causes and consequences of these two confirmed tornados, a brief announcement was issued by the South African Weather Service (SAWS) at 19:30 on Monday.

In this announcement, the SAWS’s chief forecaster for disaster risk reduction, Kevin Rae, said that the extreme weather in KwaZulu-Natal on Monday was as a result of the upper air cut-off low system that reached South Africa’s Atlantic coastline on Friday last week.

“[As stated in a warning announcement issued last week] this system was expected to develop a range of severe weather, including severe storms, heavy rain and flooding, heavy snowfall, as well as very rough seas around our southern ocean and coastal areas,” Rae stated.

Rae continued, “[On Monday afternoon], KwaZulu-Natal experienced an outbreak of at least two tornados […].”

He added that this cut-off low system is expected to move away from South African during the course of Tuesday.

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