[Video] Cyclone Enawo batters Madagascar as most powerful storm in 13 years, 3 dead

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Tropical Cyclone Enawo pushed ashore on Tuesday in northeastern Madagascar with winds equal to a Category 4 hurricane.

Trees are lashed by strong winds in Sambava, Madagascar Tuesday, March 7, 2017 as heavy rains and strong winds from a cyclone hit northeast Madagascar, raising concerns about flooding and landslides.

The cyclone hit with winds estimated at 240 kmph, making it the most powerful storm to hit the island nation in 13 years, according to Weather Underground meteorologist Jeff Masters.

Aid workers were on alert as the storm lashed the coastline, the Associated Press said. There were reports of at least 3 deaths directly related to the storm.

Enawo is forecast to rapidly weaken as it drives inland over the mountainous terrain of Madagascar, the Joint Typhoon Warning Center said.

Damaging winds and heavy rainfall will hit the northern part of the island into Wednesday, AccuWeather meteorologist Jason Nicholls said.

Though the storm's winds will diminish, ongoing heavy rain and the resulting floods will be the most dangerous parts of the storm.

Enawo has the potential to be in the top three most damaging storms in the island’s history if the forecast for heavy rain holds and causes flooding, Masters said.

Extrait #Enawo #Antalaha 07:40

Posted by Riccardo Morrelas on Monday, March 6, 2017

Twelve major — Category 3 or stronger — tropical cyclones have struck Madagascar since 1983, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. In March 2004, Tropical Cyclone Gafilo hit in roughly the same area of northeast Madagascar as Enawo, the Weather Channel said. Gafilo killed 363 people, according to the EM-DAT International Disaster Database.