Tropical Cyclone Enawo is so rapidly intensifying that officials have put Madagascar on Red Alert due to a potentially disastrous strike on March 7, 2017.
This may be the strongest landfall in eastern Madagascar in five years. Storm-surge flooding, rainfall flooding, mudslides and damaging winds are all threats.
Tropical Cyclone Enawo is rapidly intensifying, and is likely to unlease a destructive siege of damaging winds, storm surge flooding, rainfall flooding and mudslides in the island’s strongest landfall in at least five years.
Satellite loops currently show Enawo is undergoing rapid intensification around 200 miles east of the northeast coast of Madagascar as of early Monday evening.
Enawo is exhibiting the most distinct eye it has shown during its lifetime, with an intense ring of eyewall convection surrounding the eye.
— Met Office (@metoffice) 6 mars 2017
Meteo Madagascar has issued a red alert for the northeast coastal areas of Madagascar, advising residents to abandon houses on the water’s edge and store drinking water, and seek shelter inside a safe building.
Unfortunately, Enawo may strengthen further before landfall, due to favorable weather conditions.
Storm-surge flooding, damaging winds and dangerous surf are threats near and along the northeast coast of Madagascar. Downed trees, structural damage to homes and power outages may be widespread in these areas.
Enawo will also bring heavy rainfall to this mountainous island which could trigger life-threatening flash flooding and mud/rockslides. This flash flood threat could extend south into the capital of Antananarivo (population estimated around 1.4 million), and could linger into much of the week ahead, particularly if Enawo slows down as it curls southward over the island.
The last tropical cyclone of at least hurricane strength to landfall in Madagascar was Hellen on Mar. 31, 2014. Only two hurricane-strength tropical cyclones have made landfall on Madagascar’s east coast this decade: Giovanna on Feb. 13, 2012, and Bingiza on Feb. 14, 2011. In March 2004, Tropical Cyclone Gafilo made landfall as a Category 4 equivalent storm in roughly the same area of northeast Madagascar that Enawo is forecast to strike, claiming 363 lives.