The damage may not be over with Tropical Storm Cheneso, which crossed Madagascar over the weekend after making landfall on Thursday. The storm is now re-emerging over the Mozambique Channel but is moving slowly, adding to the threat of flash flooding, heavy seas and storm-related landslides.
The National Bureau of Risk and Disaster Management (BNGRC) in Madagascar says the storm made landfall on the northeast coast of the Indian Ocean island nation, north of Antalaha, with winds of 106 kilometers per hour. At least three people have died and another six are missing, with 7,240 people displaced and more than 13,000 affected.
The storm damaged schools, roads and crops, said BNGRC. Travel was cut off due to flooding as river waters rose.
Cheneso also is a hard storm to forecast, with some meteorologists warning the storm has the potential to re-intensify over water. It could pose a threat to Mozambique, but there are wide variations in forecast model data about the storm’s strength and track.
The Instituto Nacional de Meteorologia (INAM) in Maputo is monitoring the storm but has not yet issued any warnings for Mozambique.
An active cyclone season is expected in Mozambique due to warmer than average sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the Mozambique Channel. Five to seven tropical storms and cyclones are expected between December 2022 and April 2023, according to the World Food Program, with up to four expected to be major cyclones of Category 3 or higher.