Cape Town’s southeaster, also known as the Cape Doctor has been huffing, puffing and blowing things down as it gusts speeds of around 70 km/h. Sustained winds are currently the 40-50km/h range. As a result, a number of South Africa’s main routes have to be closed.
The Huguenot Tunnel on the N1 was closed after strong winds blew a truck over on Tuesday night. Bain’s Kloof pass has also been closed after trees were blown over. Chapman’s Peak is also closed after sandstone from a six ton truck became dislodged.
The Southeaster usually blows in summer and brings good weather with it, and its unusual for the winds to be raging during winter.
With the way the wind is pumping, it might leave a few people wondering why on earth the city is completely reliant on wind-power yet.
Bryn De Kocks of Storm Chasing South Africa tells The South African:
The Southeaster currently affecting the Cape is a Black Southeaster, which while unusual is not unseasonable. Between Autumn and Spring each year we tend to see the development of a few Black Southeasters in the Cape.
These tend to be caused by low pressure systems located towards the interior or to the north of us. In summer the Southeaster is caused by dominant high pressure systems. It’s all just about the location of the high or low pressure, with low pressure circulation moving clockwise and high pressure systems circulation moving counter-clockwise. The nature of this south easter is different to that seen in summer, found with sunny weather and instead is being generated by a low pressure trough to the north, a weather feature that is associated with the development of rain. The gradient of pressure accounts for the strong winds, while the low pressure is what creates the rain.
— Andries Jordaan (@1966an3s) July 22, 2015
Cape Town wind is on steroids. ????????????
— Sithandwa Ngwetsheni (@IAM_Stha) July 22, 2015
— Ilan Lazarus (@IlanLazarus) July 22, 2015
— Western Cape Tours (@WesternCapeTour) July 22, 2015