MAPUTO, Cyclone Dineo made landfall in Mozambique Wednesday evening on the coast of the southern province of Inhambane with iniitial reports indicating at least one fatality, a child killed by a falling tree in the town of Massinga, which received the full impact of the storm.

The roads to Massinga were all blocked by fallen trees, and the cyclonic winds ripped roofs off homes and institutions alike.

In Massinga, and in the provincial capital, Inhambane City, electricity and water supplies were cut. The high winds and torrential rains destroyed houses built of flimsy material, forcing their owners to sleep in the open.

The National Meteorology Institute (INAM) said Thursday that Dineo would mostly affect Inhambane and the neighbouring province of Gaza, with rainfall of up to 150 millimetres in 24 hours, and winds reaching 120 kilometres an hour.

The southern fringes of the storm system brought heavy rains to Maputo on Wednesday night and Thursday morning, but the winds were only moderate. As usually happens with storms in the capital, much of the city’s drainage system proved unable to cope, and roads were transformed into streams and rivers.

Moving inland at a speed of around 19 km an hour, the cyclone was expected to dissipate Thursday. The forecast trajectory of Dineo takes it across Inhambane and into Zimbabwe and eventually Botswana, by which time it will not pose a threat.