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Dramatic drone footage reveals Cyclone Idai's devastating power



The Category 2 storm – which made landfall in the early hours of March 15 with 175 kph (110 mph) winds and heavy rains – has devastated this southern African country.

Driving away from the airport in Beira, a port city that bore the brunt of the cyclone, it was impossible to escape the sight of debris. As rain falls, residents are emerging to survey the ruins that remain and begin their clean-up efforts.

Drone footage shot by CNN between Beira and the village of Tica has revealed the extent of the damage in the cyclone-hit areas.

Factories have been ripped clean apart while the entire aluminum roof of a school building was hanging precariously.

Nothing in Beira ̵

1; from the cathedral to the restaurants, banks and the port, where the cyclone dislodged shipping containers – escaped Idai's wrath.

Click here to see the original version of this article. tropical cyclone took something.

Telecom masts, satellite feeds and the internet all bowed to its force. The overall effect was that Idai knocked this thriving port city into a pre-digital world.

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On the road to Tica, about 80 kilometers (49 miles) from Beira's beaches, drone footage revealed massive tracts of waterlogged land and huge trees snapped like twigs.

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firmly in the rear-view mirror.

Instead, the huge swathes of inland water that are visible from space greet motorists.

For so many, these waters have taken over their lives. Farmers' crops have disappeared, and their livestock has left to wade through the dark waters in search of somewhere to graze.

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Complicating the situation further, to fall.

The new homeless are left with no choice but to trudge through the waterlogged landscape towards hastily improvised shelters.

More than half a million people have been affected in the country and at least 110,000 have sought refuge in camps.

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With no other option, some people are using rudimentary canoes to cross the flooded plains while others are trudging across the high ground to safe havens several hours walk away.

One eyewitness told CNN that in areas where flood waters were still high, people were joining hands to form human chains.

Editors: have now been reported dead in the country. But help agencies say it is premature to say how many people have been killed while some affected areas remain inaccessible.

Many are wondering what could come in the next few days in this heady mixture of undiscovered dead, stifling heat and flooded land.

Eyewitnesses have given ghastly accounts of corpses. One described seeing 300 to 400 bodies washed up on a flooded stretch of road just north of Tica.

Mozambican President Philippe Nyesi has called this "disaster of great proportions," and his full scale is yet to be truly realized.

Farai Sevenzo and Anna Cardovillis reported from Mozambique. Lauren Said-Moorhouse has contributed to this report.


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