SA Twitter forgets the rugby, complains about Joburg weather instead

Lightning thunderstorm Johannesburg Joburg weather

It’s not the fierce RWC semi-final between England and New Zealand grabbing everyone’s attention on Saturday, but this morning’s Joburg weather.

While heavy rain and localised flooding hit Cape Town on Friday, Johannesburg and surrounds have been hit by a heatwave.

On Saturday, there were indications that some rain was on the way, based on reports on Twitter. A break from the heat, set to peak at 32°C today, would be welcome. But judging by the tone and topic of #JHBWeather, rain is definitely what Johannesburg didn’t get this morning.

“June – July we had hotter days than in Sept. Oct is Aug weather, Aug was June weather. Kanti what’s happening??” reads one tweet.

And that’s a valid question. What’s up with the Joburg weather?

South Africa’s summer rainfall predictions

The South African Weather Service (SAWS) noted that the cold fronts experienced in Cape Town this weekend are typically seen in winter. Judging by those rainfall totals, many areas across the city had experienced a month’s worth of rainfall within 24 hours.

Joburg weather, meanwhile, is usually wetter in summer than winter.

SAWS’s long-term seasonal outlook does suggest Gauteng is likely to receive “below normal” precipitation between October and December, but will get wetter as we head into 2020.

“The late spring (Oct-Nov-Dec) period indicates confident forecasts that below-normal rainfall is more likely over the central to south-eastern parts of the country,” the report reads.

“Early-summer (Nov-Dec-Jan), however, indications are that above-normal rainfall is more likely for the central and eastern parts, which are predicted to continue into mid-summer (Dec-Jan-Feb).”

Joburg weather later today

The South African Weather Service on Saturday morning noted that thunderstorms could redevelop over the highveld later this evening. At present, conditions are “clearing”. So perhaps don’t throw in the towel (or put away the umbrella) just yet, Johannesburg.

Follow South African Weather Service

Weather is fickle and subject to change, so we’d recommend following SAWS on its official Twitter account, especially for updates on this weekend’s weather.

And be sure to bookmark its warnings portal too, where it regularly updates the advisories and more serious information on the daily.

Feature image: Lightning from a thunderstorm over Johannesburg in 2016, by Derek Keats via Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Andy Walker, former editor


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