Batumi prepares for ferocious storm

Batumi is the Black Sea coastal resort town in western Georgia; Photo by E. Kochalidze, 15 Jul 2014 - 11:53, Tbilisi,Georgia

Holiday-makers and locals at the Black Sea coastal resort town Batumi are being advised not to swim at local beaches for the next two days as strong storm is predicted to hit the region.

Specialists predict a ferocious storm, up to Category 4, will hit Batumi today, causing rough seas and strong waves, which pose a serious danger to swimmers.

Omar Surmanidze of the Emergency Management Agency said red flag alarms had been erected along the coastline to warn people from entering the sea.

"I call on vacationers to be careful,” he said.

"It is recommended not to swim until tomorrow afternoon.”

Surmanidze said lifeguards were patrolling the beach and were tasked to deter people from entering the water.

The temporary swimming ban will be lifted as soon as the storm poses no more danger, Surmanidze said.