(Posted 25th February 2022)
Cyclone Emnati, at one stage over open waters a category 3 storm, had luckily reduced to a category 1 storm when hitting the southern part of Madagascar, but bringing with it fresh disruptions in air and road traffic in the affected parts of the island.
Torrential rain, as during the three previous cyclones, caused flash floods, flooding and land slides. Emnati passed through areas that were also hit in part by Tropical Cyclone Batsirai less than 3 weeks ago, again bringing over 100 mm of rainfall to Mananjary alone. That town had suffered massive damage from earlier cyclone Batsarai with some reports at the time suggesting that 90 percent of the homes and buildings there were literally destroyed.
While the weather system weakened as it crossed the island, it nevertheless brought very heavy rain and strong winds to the south-east of Madagascar, including the Grand Sud region which has been suffering from an extremely severe drought over the past months.
Emnati, luckily for the African mainland countries of Mozambique and hinterland nations like Zimbabwe, Malawi, eSwatini, Lesotho and South Africa, turned into open waters again in southerly direction, sparing these previously heavily affected countries worse.
Neighbouring islands like Mauritius, Rodrigues and Reunion also avoided direct hits by the storm.