Rains destroy over 500 houses

Lissa Ngorima
At least seven people have been struck by lightning and over 500 houses destroyed by floods and violent storms since the onset of the rain season, the Civil Protection Unit has said.

CPU statistics show that the most affected areas were Epworth, Hurungwe, Muzarabani, Mt Darwin, Buhera and Chivi.

Mr Nathan Nkomo, the CPU director, said the agency had provided temporary shelter to affected families. “This season has so far seen 543 houses being destroyed and the families have been provided temporary shelters. Seven deaths have been recorded due to lightning strikes and about 53 people drowned.

“In addition to the damaged houses and deaths, 230 hectares of maize and 70 hectares of tobacco were damaged.”

Mr Nkomo said the CPU and Air Force of Zimbabwe were on high alert for disasters.

“To date we have procured 160 drums of jet A1 fuel to facilitate rescue efforts by the Air Force of Zimbabwe. At least 85 pupils at Zingore Primary School in Mt Darwin District were airlifted after the school had been hit by flash floods.”

The Meteorological Services Department recently said Zimbabwe could receive more sustained downpours and issued a flood alert.

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