Worst cyclone to hit Tonga in 60 years

Worst cyclone to hit Tonga in 60 years

Worst cyclone to hit Tonga in 60 years

Desperate people boarded up their homes and stocked up on essential supplies while praying and hoping for the best before heading to the safety of emergency shelters.

Forecasting models still predict the storm will track towards New Zealand, with the potential to pass over the country in some form early next week as an ex-tropical cyclone.

Seti said more help is on the way as Tonga Power teams from Vava'u and Ha'apai are getting ready to be deployed to Tongatapu and 'Eua.

"We're communicating as well with government officials who serve in these islands".

He said they will finalize their assessment of the whole electricity network today after Cyclone Gita caused widespread damage on Tongatapu and 'Eua.

Wind gusts at Ono-i-Lau had reached 190km/h last night.

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The other photo shows the parliament house damaged by Cyclone Gita in Nuku'alofa, Tonga. Three homes have been completely destroyed and four damaged.

"We have received initial reports from Turaga-ni-Koros indicating that housing and agriculture are the sectors with the most damages". A strong wind warning also remains in force for the rest of Fiji. "However, it is clear that Cyclone Gita has caused significant damage", Peters said. The cyclone was so severe that it ripped off the roof of the Tongan Meteorological Office and taking the national broadcaster off air for some time.

"Overall, damage to infrastructure has been minimal", Anare Leweniqila, director of Fiji's National Disaster Management Office, told Reuters.

Tonga felt the full effect of one of its worst cyclones leaving behind nothing but debris. The roof of Tonga's Parliament building was also destroyed.

A statement from the Australian Minister of Foreign Affairs noted that Australia and New Zealand were sending humanitarian aid to Tonga.

Martens said the cyclone was now south of the main Fiji island of Viti Levu and would travel west over the next 48 hours to just below New Caledonia.

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