UWC Weather, Cape Town’s disaster risk management spokesperson, Charlotte Powell, said they have been inundated with calls as a result of the fake alert.
“The hoax message refers to hurricane winds and quotes the city’s disaster operation number. We appeal to the public to disregard this message and refrain from calling the operations centre,” said Powell.
On Thursday the South African Weather Service tweeted: “The South African Weather Service will never send a warning message on WhatsApp. Whoever created it is a hoaxer and trying to create panic among the people – please ignore and delete any WhatsApp messages regarding that.”
According to the weather service, “wet and cold weather” is expected in the Western Cape on Thursday and Friday.
“Cold temperatures are expected for the western parts of the Northern and Western Cape on Thursday. Further cooling is expected on Friday over the entire Western and Northern Cape Provinces, where very cold conditions (approximately 10°C and lower) may be expected over the southern interior of the Namakwa District and northern parts of the Cape Winelands,” the weather service indicated in a report.