Rain and gale force wind warnings still in force
31st December, 2019 Forecast of rain and gale force winds are still in place for the whole of Tonga.
The National Emergency Management Committee this morning announced that these warnings will be in place until Cyclone Sarai is out of Tonga’s EEZ.
Chairman and Minister for MEIDECC Hon Poasi Tei said members of the public must continue to adhere to the warnings even though Sarai has been downgraded to Category 1.
“We are happy that Cyclone Sarai is slowly moving out and has weakened but at the same time people need to remember the warnings and take precautions,” Hon Tei said.
“It is wise for all of us to remember that until the cyclone has gone out of our reach.”
The NEMC was briefed this morning on the current situation around the country.
There were no major damage anywhere around Tongatapu and ‘Eua.
Ha’apai was on alert with the disaster management team there also working 24 hours on standby.
Hon Tei said the updates were encouraging and he thanked all members of the NEMC for their contributions.
Cyclone Sarai was on its way past Nuku’alofa around 1pm today and was expected to be heading East.
Gale force winds was expected to affect Tongatapu, ‘Eua and Ha’apai later tonight and tomorrow.
Tonga Power Limited staff were working around the clock yesterday and today to fix broken power lines in some areas of Hihifo and Ha’ateiho.
The National Emergency Management Office was also in liaison with the different District Emergency Management Committees in the other island groups.
Acting Tonga Met Director Laitia Fifita briefed the NEMC this morning and said the Cyclone Forecasting Centre in Fua’amotu will continue to be in operation until the cyclone has left Tonga’s waters and EEZ.
Issued by the: Ministry of Meteorology, Energy, Information, Disaster Management, Environment, Climate Change and Communications.