Tropical Cyclone Evan - Dec 2012
Tropical Cyclone Evan (TD04F) passed over Samoa as a Category 2 tropical cyclone on 13-14 Dec 2012, damaging almost 1,000 houses and destroying almost 700. As of 3 Jan 2013, only 810 people remained in evacuation centers, down from over 7,000 immediate after the storm. (OCHA, 3 Jan 2013) A post-disaster needs assessment began on 7 Jan, with a first draft expected by 20 Jan (OCHA, 11 Jan 2013).
TC Evan was upgraded to a Category 4 tropical cyclone on 15 Dec just as it passed on the top of Wallis Island, part of the French Territory of Wallis and Futuna, damaging the houses of 250 families (OCHA, 19 Dec 2012).
On 17 Dec, TC Evan reached Fiji as a Category 4 storm, causing widespread destruction of infrastructure and loss of property. The Government of Fiji declared a state of natural disaster for the Northern and Western Divisions. At the beginning of the emergency, there were approximately 10,000 people in more than 150 evacuation centers. As of 11 Jan 2013, 106 people remain in 11 evacuation centers. (OCHA, 11 Jan 2013) The Government launched the 2nd edition of the Humanitarian Action Plan on 8 Feb (Government, 8 Feb 2013).
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After more than 5 years of living in temporary housing, the community of Tukuraki in the highlands of Fiji are today celebrating as they move into their newly built, disaster resilient village. The Tukuraki community was devastated in 2012 as a landslide buried 80% of their village and tragically took the lives of a young family including a toddler and young baby.
Driving from the airport into the city of Apia, the capital of Samoa, is a great introduction to the country. Villages line the road with gardens filled with colorful flowers and palm trees. Hugging the northwest coastline, the road sometimes comes as close as five meters from the shoreline, giving passengers truly spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean.
But Sitiseni and her family now live in a cyclone-resistant house which has been specifically designed and engineered to withstand cyclonic winds, earthquakes and periodic surface flooding. It has also been built along the lines of the traditional Samoan Faleo’o concept, with construction based around a series of sturdy posts and poles well-suited to withstanding Pacific climate hazards.
The village of Tukuraki in Yakete, Ba is based precariously under a steep mountain which means its risk of being hit by natural disasters is a reality for its community. In January 2012, a landslide plunged through the community killing a family of four and burying more than 50 percent of the village area after a week of heavy rain in the western division triggered the slip. The landslide also wiped out the village access road, fresh water resources, and homes.
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RESULTS & ACHIEVEMENTS
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Samoa is still recovering from Cyclone Evan, which hit the country in December 2012.
In addition to short-term relief, the World Bank is investing in electronic vouchers with mobile phone technology that will deliver long-term recovery benefits.
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Reconstruction effort helps those hit by cyclone
SITISENI AFUA FUGA AND HER RESILIENT FAMILY
More than 1,200 new homes have been built by Government in the Western Division in the past 16 months as part of the Tropical Cyclone Evans rehabilitation programme benefiting more than 3000 Fijians who lost their homes from the natural disaster.
The rehabilitation programme leaves close to 300 homes to be completed before the end of this year.
Acting Commissioner Western, Luke Moroivalu said the completion of more than a thousand homes is testament of Government’s development objectives to ensure that all Fijians are empowered to contribute positively.