• The system is projected to make landfall in Madagascar on 4 or 5 January 2018.
• The system is expected to cause daily downpours in Madagascar and is impacting weather patterns in Réunion Island and Mauritius.
• The path/strength of the system is currently comparable with Tropical Cyclone Jade in 2009, which became a Tropical Cyclone just before making landfall and affected 61,000 people, causing 15 deaths and displacing 4,000 people.
Madagascar is on alert following the identification of a low weather pressure system off the north-east coast of the country, which is expected to strengthen in the southwestern Indian Ocean basin. The weather system is already causing weather disturbances in northern Madagascar and on the islands of Réunion and Mauritius. It is expected to gain strength during the week as it tracks westward, prior to making landfall on Madagascar on 4 or 5 January 2018.
The Malagasy Bureau National de Gestion des Risques et Catastrophes (BNGRC) is closely monitoring the situation and preparing to deploy teams to Maroantsetra, Fenerive Est, Brickaville and Manakara districts (all located on the eastern coast of Madagascar) to support local authorities to respond, including to facilitate preventive evacuations if required. Ahead of the cyclone season, the BNGRC led preparedness activities, including: reviewing and updating contingency plans; identifying lessons learned from Cyclone Enawo; undertaking simulations to test response readiness of the Government and humanitarian partners; and establishing operations centres.
The next Flash Update will be issued as soon as more information is available
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