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Fiji: Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston Situation Report No. 8 (as of 28 February 2016)

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Highlights

  • On 20 and 21 February Category 5 Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston cut a path of destruction across Fiji.

  • The cyclone is estimated to be one of the most severe ever to hit the South Pacific.

  • The Fiji Government estimates almost 350,000 people living in the cyclone’s path could have been affected (180,000 men and 170 000 women).

  • 42 people have been confirmed dead.

  • 1,177 schools and early childhood education centres (ECEs) to re-open around Fiji.

  • Total damage bill estimated at more than FJ$1billion or almost half a billion USD.

  • 87,000 households targeted for relief in 12 priority areas across Fiji.

Situation Overview

Food security is becoming an issue with crops ruined and markets either destroyed or inaccessible in many affected areas because of the cyclone. Partners are seeking further clarity on the distribution of food rations in order to assess need as the response continues and the government has flagged that it will be requesting food aid from the international community. As agreed by the Fiji Government, planning is now underway for a Flash Appeal to rapidly secure international funds for urgent projects related to this emergency. In its response, the Fiji Government is targeting about 350,000 people across all four Divisions who were living in the path of the cyclone.

The Fiji Government estimates the damage bill from Tropical Cyclone Winston will be almost half a billion US dollars. More than 1000 schools and early learning centres will open on 29 February. Government figures show more than 51,000 people are still sheltering in 811 facilities across the country, some of them schools. The provision of safe transitional accommodation for those leaving shelters must be a top priority. Relief supplies, including food rations, are being distributed as teams assess needs and priorities across the country. Intermittent essential services, as well as poor road access and communications difficulties, remain a constraint for both assessments and the delivery of relief.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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