Banaban Voice

News and information service for Banaban Network Worldwide!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

A Tropical Cyclone WARNING has been issued and now in force for Northern Vanua Levu and the Northern Lau Group.

The weather status was upgraded from a Cyclone Alert to a Cyclone Warning in the last hour by the Nadi Weather Office.

Tropical Cyclone TOMAS centre [980HPA] [Cat 2] was located near 12 decimal 4 south 179 decimal 2 west or about 425km north-northeast of Udu Point at 3am today.

The cyclone is intensifying and close to its centre has estimated average winds of 100km/hr increasing to 140kmph in the next 18 – 24 hours.

The cyclone is moving southwest at 10km/hr and intensifying.

On this forecast track, the cyclone will bring Damaging Gale Force winds over most parts of Fiji in the next 36 hours.

The Cyclone Warning is for Vanua Levu and the Northern Lau group, while the rest of the country remains on Cyclone ALERT.

This can be upgraded to a WARNING as Cyclone TOMAS moves closer to Fiji.

Strong wind and rain is being experienced in the Northern division.

DISMAC has confirmed that 15 evacuation centres have been activated, 14 in the Northern Divison, 1 in Kadavu. They have also confirmed that 630 evacuees are already sheltering in Evacuation Centres.

Strong winds, rough seas and heavy rain is currently being felt at UDU Point in Vanua Levu, although Cyclone Tomas is 400 km away. LAGI Health Centre staff nurse VINI VELAVELA says there has been a dramatic change in the weather.

“We just made a call to the village in Vunakodi and according to a woman there she said they are experiencing strong winds plus heavy rain and sea too they can see its rough but at Langi we are experiencing strong winds only not heavy rain, we had strong winds last night accompanied by rain but houses here are being shuttered, people are here and come to higher areas and some of them are in the health centre with me.”

In Savusavu FBC NEWS has received reports of strong wind and rain.

People are now battering down their houses and taking all necessary precautions.

Fiji Broadcasting Corporation

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