The Meteorological Service Department (MSD) has warned that heavy rains and violent storms will hit the country starting on Boxing Day until 30 December 2023.
In a statement issued on 24 December, seen by NewsDay, MSD said there were risks of flooding in low-lying areas. It said:
Thunder and lightning accompanied by hailstones, and strong damaging winds are anticipated across the country.
All areas are expected to receive localised rainfall amounts of 50mm or more in 24 hours and flooding is possible in low-lying areas such as Muzarabani, Save and Zambezi Valley.
The Met Department also warned that places such as “open fields, hilltops, tall trees, and bodies of water should be avoided. Remain indoors during thunderstorms and avoid crossing flooded rivers.”
Every year, floodwater flows into some homes, especially in urban areas where local authorities allocated people residential stands in flood-prone areas such as wetlands.
Last week nearly 15 houses in Budiriro 4 suburb were partially submerged in floodwater after heavy rains pounded Harare and surrounding areas.
Zimbabwe is poorly prepared for natural disasters such as floods due to the underfunding of the Department of Civil Protection and the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) Sub-Aqua Unit.