Six die in freak storm

Six die in freak storm

MASERU – Six people, including a toddler, died as harsh weather conditions turned fatal in Quthing’s Mount Moorosi constituency last week.
Four men people died when a truck they were travelling in was washed away on their way from work last Wednesday. Another died after he was struck by lightning on the same day.

A toddler died instantly after a house collapsed on her on Thursday.
A violent hailstorm pounded Mount Moorosi leaving five people dead during the storm. Several livestock were also lost.
In the first case, the men were crossing an overflowing Tele River when a mighty wave caused by hailstorm hit their truck, which overturned before being swept away by the powerful current.

A survivor told national television that he had no idea how he survived.
“I only saw myself here at the hospital,” said Maama Letsie from his Quthing Hospital bed.
The man who was struck by lightning died instantly.
The hailstorm damaged property such as houses and ca

rs and killed several livestock. Some school children sustained serious injuries on the head as if they had been hit by stones after they were caught up in the storm. They were treated as outpatients at the hospital.
Communications Minister Thesele ’Maseribane, who comes from Mount Moorosi, immediately visited the area to assess the situation.
’Maseribane said the Chinese Embassy has pledged to help the victims.
The Chinese Embassy visited the area on Tuesday.

The Lesotho Red Cross Society has pledged help and this week said it was assessing the situation.
Queen ’Masenate Mohato Seeiso’s Trust Fund is raising funds specifically for the Quthing disaster.
In another incident, the death of a two-year-old toddler in Ha-Tšosane, Maseru last Thursday brought reminders of the Sesotho adage, pula ke mahlopha-a-senya.

Indeed rain is good but at the same time it can be destructive.
It destroyed an already dilapidated house, which collapsed on the little girl and killed her instantly.
The girl, Matšeliso Motsetse, had just entered a room in which her sick grandfather was sleeping when the wall gave in.
The grandfather, ’Molotsi Ntoane, could not save the girl.
All he could do was call for help because his whole body was aching and he could barely get off the bed to remove the bricks from the tiny body of his granddaughter.
He watched in horror as the little girl succumbed.
“I heard a heavy sound of bricks cracking but I could not even get out of bed because of the horrible, terrible pains that affected me endlessly during that time,” Ntoane says.

“These bricks fell over her and even before I could reach to where she was buried under the debris I could see that she was already dead,” he says.
He recalled the wonderful memories he shared with her.
“Matšeliso was always around me. She used to come here often and it’s very sad that she had to die like that, right in front of my eyes. I am frail from sicknesses and I could not rescue my granddaughter.”

“I just wish God took me instead of her. I am already dying and I wonder why God had to take her instead of me,” he said, weeping uncontrollably.
The Lesotho Meteorological Services (LMS) said the country is experiencing unusual changing patterns of rains that are extraordinarily excessive.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, the LMS said the country should expect more heavy rains with chances of thunderstorms in the next few days.
The LMS said most areas in the country experienced excessive rains that were accompanied by lightning and storms since March 3.
The Mokhotlong district has been the worst affected by this unusual weather, followed by Quthing and Thaba-Tseka, according to the LMS.
The LMS said the Mount Moorosi disaster was caused by an air mass of humid but warm air from the north that collided with a cold one from the south-west.

“The collision of these air masses caused this heavy rain that resulted in floods,” read a statement by the LMS.
It said on March 15 a humid air current from northwest, known as Congo air mass, and another from the Indian Ocean, collided with the cold one from the Atlantic Ocean.

“These air masses hovered on our country in concert which resulted in heavy rain showers, thunderstorms and hailstorms,” read the LMS statement.
People should expect cold weather today and tomorrow.
Mountainous regions, especially Qacha’s Nek, will experience much colder conditions than the rest of the country.
The LMS warned people to stay indoors in cases of heavy rains accompanied by storms.
“These kinds of rains accompanied by hailstorm normally take a short time, about 30 to 60 minutes, and they are gone,” said the LMS, warning of overflowing rivers.

Majobere Selebalo

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