With summer comes warmer weather, more hours of daylight and more time off to hit the road and take a holiday. However, summer also brings an increased risk of severe weather and tropical storms that can put a spanner in the works if you are not prepared.
On the Road
When taking a road trip or traveling in an unfamiliar location, it is important to keep up-to-date on the weather in that location. Take time before embarking on your trip to understand what the typical weather is along the path, and take a look at a long-term forecast to get a more comprehensive idea of what may impact your route.
The same rule of thumb that works at home, generally works on the road: Be prepared. Keep copies of all your important documents—itineraries, passports and IDs, driver’s licenses and credit cards—in a safe place in case the originals are lost.
Keep a road-ready emergency kit, which should include items such as bottled water, non-perishable food and a surplus of daily medication. Additionally, a first aid kit and flares or warning triangles should be stored in your cars.
Have a car charger for cell phones to ensure the ability to call for help if needed. Smart phones also give you access to apps that can give you up-to-date weather forecasts or help you locate nearby hotels, petrol stations, hospitals or other forms of services if needed.
Listening to the local radio station should also give you a good indication of the current weather conditions and state of the roads.
While you are on the road traveling, it is crucial to pay attention to all lights and signs, and to keep the radio on in case of an emergency broadcast. A car is not a safe place to be if flash flooding or a cyclone is coming through the area, so if the weather is turning severe, find a secure place to stop and wait out the worst of it.
It takes less than a metre of water to move a car, so it is essential never try to drive through a flooded roadway.
In poor visibility, drive slowly and put your hazard lights on. It’s always better to be late to a destination than to get in an accident and not arrive at all. It is recommended that you check your windshield wiper blades before leaving on a trip to be sure the car is ready for poor weather conditions.
Beaches can provide a fun and relaxing getaway in the summer, but for some beach destinations, the tropical season should be taken into consideration during planning.
For the most part, the weather in Mozambique is fine, but on rare occasions such as in the case of Cyclone Dineo, things can take a turn and it’s best to be prepared.
If you’re on holiday when a storm hits, it will be important to understand the local resources available to you. This can be accomplished by talking to the resort staff about any concerns you may have and learning how to safely weather the storm. Resort staff are a great source of information and are often in touch with local authorities—and their job is to keep guests safe and comfortable.
Following the Facebook pages and websites of the resort you are travelling to is also a great way for establishments to communicate with guests in the case of upcoming weather fronts, road closures and emergencies.
An added precaution when travelling to far off destinations is purchasing the right travellers’ insurance for your trip. Read the specifics of the plan you buy to be sure of what’s covered and what’s not. Trip interruption insurance is helpful because severe weather elsewhere can often cause missed connections or other problems getting to your destination, even if you’re not headed into the path of the storm. When purchasing travel insurance, it is essential to purchase it far enough in advance. This particular insurance primarily covers “unforeseen” circumstances, so once a storm has formed it is too late for coverage.