Get more Mail & Guardian
Subscribe or Login

Which is SA’s windiest city?

East London might be small, but has a lot of bluster. The city was officially named South Africa’s least calm city on Wednesday, as it always has wind blowing even if its residents cannot feel it.

In a Weather Services study of 128 recording stations over 30 years, East London’s percentage of wind-free days was so low that it was rounded off to zero percent.

However, when it comes to wind speed and frequency of strong winds, the city loses its breezier-than-thou status.

”East London has the least calm but if you take all three into consideration and add it all together you’ll find Cape Point is the windiest station and PE is the windiest city,” said Hugh van Niekerk, station manager of the South African Weather Service in Port Elizabeth.

East London did not even make the top five windiest places in South Africa. The average wind speed in East London was 4,1 metres per second, and nine percent of the city’s wind blew at eight metres per second.

In comparison, the average speed at Cape Point was 6,9 metres per second and 42%of its wind blew at eight or more metres per second.

Port Elizabeth notched an average speed of 4,3 metres per second and had the country’s second most frequent strong winds. The study was done after airline kulula.com claimed Port Elizabeth was South Africa’s windiest city.

Calm was measured at absolute zero wind movement. Winds that were not noticeable to people are regarded as ”uncalm”.

Malcolm Bennetts of Extreme Sports said East London’ wind was great for kites, watersports and paragliding — especially in summer.

”It is always windy here — if it’s not east or west, it’s coming off the land,” commented local yacht skipper John Barry.

East London’s wind was unpredictable both in direction and intensity, he said.

Van Niekerk said a constant breeze was not a negative thing and that very strong winds were more of a discomfort.

”If there wasn’t a bit of a breeze it would be stinking hot and most unpleasant.” – Sapa

Subscribe for R500/year

Thanks for enjoying the Mail & Guardian, we’re proud of our 36 year history, throughout which we have delivered to readers the most important, unbiased stories in South Africa. Good journalism costs, though, and right from our very first edition we’ve relied on reader subscriptions to protect our independence.

Digital subscribers get access to all of our award-winning journalism, including premium features, as well as exclusive events, newsletters, webinars and the cryptic crossword. Click here to find out how to join them and get a 57% discount in your first year.

Related stories

WELCOME TO YOUR M&G

If you’re reading this, you clearly have great taste

If you haven’t already, you can subscribe to the Mail & Guardian for less than the cost of a cup of coffee a week, and get more great reads.

Already a subscriber? Sign in here

Advertising

Subscribers only

R350 social relief grant not enough to live on

Nearly half of the population in South Africa — one of the most unequal countries in the world — is considered chronically poor.

More top stories

R350 social relief grant not enough to live on

Nearly half of the population in South Africa — one of the most unequal countries in the world — is considered chronically poor.

US fashion contaminates Africa’s water

Untreated effluent from textile factories in in Lesotho, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mauritius and Madagascar pours into rivers, contaminating the water

Deep seabed mining a threat to Africa’s coral reefs

The deep oceans are a fragile final frontier, largely unknown and untouched but mining companies and governments — other than those in Africa — are eying its mineral riches

Komodo dragon faces extinction

The world’s largest monitor lizard has moved up the red list for threatened species, with fewer than 4 000 of the species left
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…
×