South Africa – Deadly Flash Floods in Limpopo and Mpumalanga

Parts of South Africa experienced heavy rain from 05 January to 08 January, 2017. As many as 7 people have died after being caught in the flood waters of swollen rivers in Limpopo and Mpumalanga.

South African Weather Service had warned of a risk of flash floods in Limpopo, Mpumalanga and Gauteng.

South Africa Police Service said that helicopters were used to rescue 6 people from flood water in Limpopo Province on Thursday, 05 January.

South Africa Police Service also reported that 2 people died in flash floods in Kwaggafontein, Mpumalanga province on 07 January. Via Social Media, the Police Service said that a taxi became stranded crossing a swollen river in Kwaggafontein. One passenger and Fire and Rescue member drowned. The driver of the taxi was rescued.

Local media also reported that as many as 5 people died in flood waters from the swollen Limpopo River near Beitbridge in Limpopo.

There were also reports of severe flooding in parts of Gauteng late on Saturday 07 January. Local media said that “Various roads including Witkoppen, the N1 near the Dieplkoof interchange and the M1 double decker are flooded due to the heavy rains.”

South Africa Police offered a list of tips and precautions to take during heavy rainfall that may cause possible flash floods, including avoiding crossing swollen rivers and streams.

Flood Summary

Last updated: January 17, 2017
Limpopo and Mpumalanga, South Africa, January 2017
January 5 to January 8, 2017
Flash flood
Extreme rainfall


A - Kwaggafontein
B - Beitbridge


Rainfall level
151 mm in 24 hours
Lydenburg, Mpumalanga - January 7 to January 8, 2017
Rainfall level
87 mm in 24 hours
Skukuza, Mpumalanga - January 6 to January 7, 2017


7 people
January 6 to January 8, 2017