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    Tropical Cyclone Danger in Mozambique

    By By Jim Andrews, Accuweather.com senior meteorologist
    January 20, 2012, 8:38:37 AM EST

    A potentially dangerous tropical cyclone will threaten destructive wind and flooding rain along the central coast of Mozambique for at least the next two to three days.

    The highest weather-related threat to life and property will involve a stretch of coast between Beira and Angoche, particularly in the area of Quelimane.

    The intensifying cyclone, located in the Mozambique Channel, could reach hurricane status by Saturday.

    Thursday, the nearly stationary center of Tropical Cyclone Eight, dubbed Funso by officials of Madagascar, was located about 100 miles southeast of Angoche, Mozambique, according to the Tropical Cyclone Center of La Reunion. Highest winds were estimated to be 40 to 45 mph.

    Official forecast agencies such as the Tropical Cyclone Center and the Joint Typhoon Warning Center are calling slow movement, mostly to the west and southwest, over waters near the middle Mozambique coast through at least Sunday. Substantial intensification to a potentially dangerous storm of hurricane strength is also forecast.

    Forecast tools available to AccuWeather.com meteorologists also imply a potentially dangerous storm by the end of the week.

    One potentially dangerous aspect of Funso will be the slow movement, which could bring damaging wind and rain to bear on the coast for an extended stretch of time.

    Elsewhere in the southern Indian Ocean on Thursday, a second tropical cyclone was also ramping up. Centered more than 500 miles east-northeast of Mauritius, Tropical Cyclone Ethel was strengthening as it tracked toward the south-southwest.

    Although Ethel is forecast to steer well east of Mauritius itself, the distant, smaller island of Rodrigues could suffer damaging winds and flooding rain from Ethel late Friday into Saturday.

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