The Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMET) has issued warnings to residents of 12 northern states and the federal capital territory (FCT) of thunderstorms and heavy rainfalls in May 2023. The affected states are Borno, Taraba, Gombe, Bauchi, Adamawa, Yobe, Plateau, Nasarawa, Kaduna, Jigawa, Kano, and Katsina. The agency cautioned that the two-week rainfall might lead to flash floods. NiMet’s Public Relations General Manager, Muntari Ibrahim in a statement issued on Friday said; “Thunderstorm cells are currently observed over Borno, Taraba, Gombe, Bauchi, and Kano states. These are expected to propagate westward to give squally thunderstorms to some cities, including Maiduguri, Gashua, Katsina, Kaduna, and Kano…”
He said the thunderstorms are expected to last for about two-six hours of heavy downpours of rainfall. Ibrahim noted that in areas where thunderstorms were expected, strong winds might precede the rains. He warned that these could cause some trees, electric poles, unsecured objects, and weak buildings to fall and block roads and other streets of affected cities.
He, therefore, urged residents living in those areas to be cautious and stay indoors, particularly during heavy rainfalls. “You’re to avoid being struck by lightning, including the falling of trees on motorists and commuters,” he further warned.
He also advised airline operators to avail themselves of weather forecasts periodically from the agency for effective planning of operations.
NiMet also called on disaster risk managers, agencies, and individuals to be proactive and take precautionary measures to avert loss of lives and property during the rainy season.