Gale force winds to batter east coast

Cape Town - Gale force winds are expected to batter the east coast on Friday, spreading from Cape St Francis to Kei Mouth in the afternoon, the Eastern Cape provincial government warned.

It said near-gale force winds were also expected inland from Cape St Francis to East London.

The provincial ministry of rural development warned residents to stay indoors, where possible to avoid falling trees and debris and farmers to be on high alert for veld fires.

It said small boats should be covered in harbours or protected bays and avoid the open sea.