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ELECTION DAY 2024

Sunny and cool weather predicted for SA voters ahead of seventh democratic national poll

Sunny and cool weather predicted for SA voters ahead of seventh democratic national poll
Voters can expect mostly sunny and mild weather conditions when they queue up to cast their ballot on 29 May 2024. (Photo: EPA / HALDEN KROG)

Voters across most parts of the country can expect sunny and cool conditions as they line up to cast their vote in the seventh general elections. It will be warm in the northern provinces.

The 27.6 million registered voters in South Africa can expect good weather conditions as they line up to vote in the 2024 national elections on Wednesday.

Voting stations across the country will open at 7am, and while it may be a chilly start, the day is expected to be sunny and dry, according to the SA Weather Service.

Despite some windy and gusty conditions over the southwestern interior and some morning fog along the west coast and the escarpment of Mpumalanga and Limpopo, voters can mostly expect warm conditions with no severe weather anticipated.

Read more in Daily Maverick: Elections 2024

“The persistence of such mild, settled weather conditions is somewhat unusual for this time of year but will no doubt be welcomed by election officials as well as the public,” said the SA Weather Service.

The SA Weather Service predicts that it will be windy over the western interior, especially from mid-morning onwards, and warns that dust could reduce visibility in these areas. It could also result in minor disruptions and discomfort for voters queuing at voting stations.

Despite warmer weather in the northern areas of Limpopo, North West and Northern Cape, Election Day is predicted to be sunny and cool. 

“It is undoubtedly good news that no severe or extreme weather is anticipated in the lead-up to, and including, voting day,” said Lehlohonolo Thobela, an SA Weather Service meteorologist.

“It is also very encouraging that daytime weather conditions will remain pleasantly cool over the southern half of the country, whilst the northern provinces will be warm, but not particularly hot.”

Pack your hat and sunblock

The SA Weather Service recommends that voters and election officials bring along a wide-brimmed hat, water, sunblock and sunglasses to their voting station, especially in regions that are expected to have warmer weather, like the north, as you might be standing in the sun for several hours while queuing, 

Dr Caradee Wright, lead of the South African Medical Research Council’s climate change and human health research programme, said that during periods of intense heat, it’s important to follow some simple steps:

  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Stay in the shade where possible (or wear a hat).
  • Wear loose clothing.
  • Keep an eye on infants, children and the elderly who are especially vulnerable to heat.

Cold front looms

While voting day is expected to remain dry and rain-free, the SA Weather Service reported that a cold front has begun moving closer to the Western Cape. However, the current weather prediction models indicate that rainfall associated with the arrival of the cold front will only occur after Wednesday. 

Thobela told Daily Maverick that colder conditions with scattered to isolated showers and rain are expected after the voting week over the southern areas of the country. 

Those in the Western and Eastern Cape can expect temperatures to drop as the cold front makes landfall during the first week of June. DM

Gallery

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