Country prepares for Cyclone Gita

By Staff Writer ,

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A video posted on Facebook shows water ripping through a family’s home, sweeping properties along the way including a family vehicle. Video: Liyah Leyfy Facebook

Days of heavy downpour has taken a toll on some parts of the big island of Savai’i as the country hunkers down to await the arrival of what has now been named as Cyclone Gita.

The Category 1 cyclone is expected to hit Samoa within the next 24 hours.

In the meantime, a video posted on Facebook shows water ripping through a family’s home, sweeping properties along the way including a family vehicle.

Elsewhere on the big island, transportation has been severely restricted, as a number of fords have been flooded and cannot be crossed.

The notorious Maliolio river has burst and members of the public have been warned to take extra care.

Overnight flights to Fiji were cancelled. 

Ferry trips between Savai’i and Upolu were cancelled yesterday. 

Some schools have already sent students home for the day.

According to the latest update from the Samoa Met Office, the country should expect winds to pick up tomorrow morning.

The following is the latest weather update issued this afternoon.

 

SPECIAL WEATHER BULLETIN NUMBER ONE (1) FOR SAMOA
ISSUED BY SAMOA METEOROLOGICAL SERVICES AT 090000 UTC OR 02.00 PM 
FRIDAY 09
th FEBRUARY 2018

 

“TROPICAL CYCLONE WARNING CATEGORY 1 (39-54mph) WILL BE EFFECTIVE FOR SAMOA WITHIN THE NEXT 12-24HRS.”

Fogasavai’i.  Photo and Video/ Liyah Leyfy (Facebook)
Fogasavai’i. Photo and Video/ Liyah Leyfy (Facebook)

“WIND ADVISORY REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR ALL OF SAMOA”

“HEAVY RAIN WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR SAMOA; FLOODING AND LANDSLIDE IS POSSIBLE FOR VULNERABLE AREAS.”

 “FLOOD ADVISORY WILL BE EFFECTIVE FOR LOW-LYING COASTAL AREAS DUE TO HIGH SURF FROM SATURDAY MORNING.”

 “ADVISORY FOR SMALL CRAFT AND ALIA FISHING BOATS REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR ALL SAMOA OPEN WATERS DUE TO STRONG AND GUSTY WITH HIGH COMBINED WAVES AND SWELLS.”

 

Tropical Depression 07F was located -14.3 South, -176.1 West or at about 385 km West South West of Asau or 469 km West of Apia at 090100 UTC or 1:00 p.m. today.

Tropical Depression 07 continues to move East North East towards Samoa at the speed of 17 knots and expected to intensify into a Tropical Cyclone Category 1 in the next 12-24 hours. Expect winds closer to the centre of 39-54mph.

 

Tonight and Tomorrow:
Occasional showers with heavy falls and few thunderstorms.
Westerly winds of 20-30 mph gusty at times and may increase to 45 mph early tomorrow morning. Combine waves and swells of 7-9 feet for Northern waters and 8-10 feet for Southern waters.

Saturday and Sunday:

Periods of rain, heavy at times and thunderstorms
Westerly winds of 40-50 mph and possibly increase up to 65 mph at times. Combine waves and swells of 8-10 feet for Northern waters and 8-10 feet for Southern waters.

Seas very rough and damaging swells of 10-12 feet affect open seas.

Potential Impact – River overflows, Slippery road, Poor Visibility, flooding, landslide and flying objects.


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