Seychelles declares state of emergency after flood and explosion

The floods are the latest in a series of climate shocks recorded this year across East Africa.

Fishermen at work at the port Victoria, on the Seychelles island of Mahe, November 18, 2009 [Susana Vera/Reuters]

Seychelles President Wavel Ramkalawan declared a state of emergency on Thursday after a blast at an explosives depot and heavy rains damaged an industrial zone and surrounding areas.

The blast shook the main island of Mahe as heavy rains triggered flooding which killed three people, the president’s office said in a statement, calling for a minute of silence.

“Everyone is being asked to stay at home,” it added. “All schools will be closed. Only workers in the essential services and persons travelling will be allowed free movement.”

Footage broadcast on national television showed streets covered in deep mud and strewn with debris and uprooted trees.

The government’s official Visit Seychelles account on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, said the international airport and ferries between its islands remained operational for tourists.

The Seychelles, a major tourist destination, is made up of 115 islands and is the least populous country in Africa with about 100,000 people. It is off the eastern coast of Africa.

The floods are the latest in a series of climate shocks recorded this year in that part of the continent after a string of floods, landslides and droughts across Kenya, Mauritius, Madagascar, Somalia and Tanzania.

Source: News Agencies