In the late evening and early morning hours of the 12th and 13th of February 2014, Lüderitz “Buchters” were taken off guard when a spectacular and unexpected thunder and lightning storm hit the town. Reports of between 9mm and 10mm of rainfall were made. And although that is relatively little water, it came down quickly and caused a stir – still to date its the hot topic in town.
The result: Electricity cuts, mud slides, flooding, leaking roofs, damaged buildings, terrified pets and a town in disarray.
But the next morning “the desert looked freshly washed”, Buchter Dr Jessica Kemper said. She described the scene the next morning as follows: “The sun was shining brightly, the air was fresh, birds sat with outstreched wings at the edge of the Second Lagoon drying their feathers and there were reptiles sunning themselves everywhere on the rocks”.
The town, on the other hand, “looked slightly less serene …”. However, the council workers were out in force to restore the town to its former state. Jessica explained: “The causeway to Shark Island was knee-deep under water … muddy runoff everywhere, staff at a shopt at the Waterfront carrying furniture outside to dry … water pipes exposed where the gravel road had washed away”.
Buchters said that while rain itself is not a surprise, the ferocity and intensity of the lightning storm and the amount of rain in the short time span, caught everyone unawares. But, in the aftermath, the surprised Buchters took to the town and began a clean up marvelling at the power of nature.
Here are some photos shared by locals.