Red weather alerts (the highest level on a four-point scale), for heavy rain and strong winds were issued on Tuesday, January 22, for the Diana, Sofia, Boeny, Betsiboka, and Melaky regions. A yellow alert (the third-highest level on a four-point scale), has been issued for the Bongolava, Itasy, and Analamanga central regions. Wind gusts up to 56km/h (34 mph) are expected in the coming hours across the island. Associated transportation disruptions are expected, along with possible power outages. Further heavy rain, along with related disruptions are possible in the coming days.
On a related note, 14 people were killed in the capital Antananarivo on January 19-20 following downpours and related landslides.
Flooding is common in Madagascar, particularly during the rainy season (November to April), and can result in significant transportation disruptions, structural damage, and loss of life.
Individuals present in Madagascar are advised to monitor local weather reports and adhere to any instructions issued by the local authorities. Remember that driving or walking through running water can be dangerous - 15 cm (6 in) of running water is enough to knock over an adult - and that floodwater may contain wastewater or chemical products; all items having come into contact with the water should be disinfected and all foodstuffs discarded.
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