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Mozambique: Flooding from Tropical Storm Dando kills 5, displaces thousands

Mozambique hit by Tropical Storm Dando, which caused flooding and destruction in the country's south, leaving five people dead.

Mozambique tropical storm floods 2012 01 19Enlarge
A Mozambican man helps his wife cross the flooded highway to Xai-Xai from Maputo, Feb. 22, 2000. At least 700 people died, and a million were displaced, after the tropical storm 12 years ago that caused the worst floods in Mozambique's history. On Jan. 19, 2012, emergency officials in Mozambique said five people had died after Tropical Storm Dando hit the coast, causing flooding in Maputo and Gaza province. (Yova Lemmer/AFP/Getty Images)

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa — Five people died in flooding and destruction caused by Tropical Storm Dando, which hit southern Mozambique this week.

It was the first tropical storm to hit Mozambique's south since 1984, Agence France-Presse reported.

Tropical Storm Dando brought gusts of up to 75 miles per hour, and 8 inches of rain, when it hit the southern African country from Sunday to Tuesday. 

Three people died in Gaza province, and two in Maputo province, AFP reported. An estimated 4,000 homes were flooded, and nearly 300 classrooms left without rooftops. 

The storm brought back memories of flooding 12 years ago, also caused by a tropical storm, that was the worst disaster in Mozambique's history. At least 700 people died and a million were displaced in the terrible Mozambique flood of 2000.

More from GlobalPost: South Africa: Kruger park flooding forces evacuations (VIDEO)

Heavy rains have also caused flooding in neighboring South Africa this week, including at the famous Kruger National Park, where guest lodges were swamped with water and tourists had to be rescued by helicopter. 

Kruger park officials said Thursday that 70 park visitors and 10 park staff have been evacuated from the park.

"Guests are urged to exercise caution around rivers as crocodiles are likely to be in flat areas," an advisory said.

Just outside the park, in the area around Hoedspruit, residents were left stranded by the floodwaters. Nearly 150 people were rescued by helicopter from the roofs of their homes.

In the Bushbuck ridge area, also near Kruger park, 600 students trapped by the floods were rescued from their schools.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/africa/120119/mozambique-tropical-storm-dando-floods-maputo