Samoa: Cyclones Val and Wasa - Dec 1991
Samoa's nine islands lay in an area prone to tropical cyclones. In 1990 and 1991, despite a less than a one-in-a-hundred-years probability, Samoa experienced two catastrophic cyclones, Ofa and Val, with winds in excess of 200 kilometers per hour. The impact was disastrous-causing more than US$500 million dollars in damage, sweeping whole villages out to sea, wrecking critical infrastructure and flooding the capital, Apia. They destroyed 80 percent of crops and around 60 percent of coral reefs and coastal fishing grounds.
CYCLONES VAL AND WASA
INFORMATION REPORT NO. 1
9 DECEMBER 1991
1. UNDP/UNDRO RESIDENT REPRESENTATIVE IN APIA, SAMOA, AS WELL AS CHIEF OF UNDRO SOUTH PACIFIC PROGRAMME OFFICE IN SUVA, FIJI, AND AUSTRALIAN OVERSEAS DISASTER RESPONSE ORGANIZATION (AODRO) HAVE REPORTED TWO CYCLONES MOVING IN TANDEM THROUGH CENTRAL SOUTH PACIFIC OVER WEEKEND 7/8 DECEMBER.