7 February 2022
At least 10 people have been killed and nearly 50,000 displaced after Cyclone Batsirai brought strong winds and rain to Madagascar on Saturday evening.
One of the worst-hit towns was Nosy Varika on the east coast where almost 95% of buildings were destroyed “as if we had just been bombed” and floods cut access, an official said.
Cyclone Batsirai swept inland late on Saturday, slamming into the eastern coastline with heavy rain and wind speeds of 165 kph (100 mph). It was projected it could displace as many as 150,000 people.
The damage from the storm compounded the destruction wreaked by Cyclone Ana, which hit the island, with a population of nearly 30,000,000, two weeks ago, killing 55 people and displacing 130,000
Madagascar’s office of disaster and risk management said in a bulletin late on Sunday 10 people had been killed. State radio said some died when their house collapsed in the town of Ambalavao, about 460 km south of the capital Antananarivo.
Electricity was knocked out in the town as poles were toppled by gusts of winds that blew all night into Sunday morning.
In the central region of Haute Matsiatra, villagers shovelled mud from a road to clear damage from a landslide caused by Batsirai.
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