Video: Tornado hits Tongaat

Henry

A tornado hit Tongaat in KwaZulu-Natal on Monday and caused large-scale damage.

IPSS emergency services’ medical and search and rescue teams were deployed after reports were received of a tornado in the area.

KZN VIP Protection Services has warned the public to stay indoors as the storm moves through KwaZulu-Natal.

Reaction Unit South Africa (Rusa) says it started receiving calls for assistance from residents at around 16:40. “All available response officers and Rusa paramedics were immediately deployed.”

Several houses in Magwaveni and Sandfields collapsed, according to Rusa. “Dozens of residents, including minor children, who sought shelter from the storm, were injured when the structures collapsed. Trees were uprooted and roads were blocked. This caused major bottlenecks. Several vehicles were also damaged.”

Many injured persons have already been taken to hospitals.

The eThekwini municipality has meanwhile issued a level 4 weather warning. “The forecast model indicates widespread heavy rain over KwaZulu-Natal, including the eThekwini region today between 12:00 and 23:00,” said a statement shared on social media.

This level 4 warning could lead to flooding of roads and informal settlements and damage to infrastructure. Residents are advised to stay indoors and not travel unless absolutely necessary.

In emergencies, the public can contact the municipality’s disaster management unit on 031 361 0000.