Thousands of homes were left without power in Mauritius on Wednesday, following powerful cyclone winds which battered the Indian Ocean Island nation.
According to reports, Tropical cyclone Batsirai passed within about 130 kilometres (80 miles) of the holiday paradise, bringing heavy downpours and winds of around 120 kilometres per hour, with a peak of 151 kilometres per hour recorded in the capital Port Louis.
With public transport cancelled, shops and banks shut, and air and sea travel halted, life was brought to a standstill in the Indian Ocean Island nation.
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At least 7,500 homes were reported to be without power after the winds knocked down trees onto electricity lines, according to the local electricity board. The telephone network was also disrupted.
The reopening of schools, which were closed since November 2021 following the outbreak of the Covid variant Omicron, could not take place as planned.
A statement from the nation ‘weather service revealed that Cyclonic conditions will persist on the island until late evening. This is even as the French Island of Reunion, which lies about 230 kilometres southwest of Mauritius, was on red alert for the likely passage of cyclone Batsirai overnight.
It will be recalled that In 2007, two people were killed in Mauritius and nine hurt in Reunion when a cyclone hit the islands.
Tropical storms and torrential rains have also wreaked havoc in southern Africa in recent days, leaving a trail of destruction in their wake. At least 86 people were confirmed killed last week following the storm in Mozambique, Madagascar and Malawi.
Story was adapted from New StraigtsTimes.