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DEPARTMENT OF INFORMATION: 5pm NEWS & WEATHER UPDATE

DEPARTMENT OF INFORMATION: 5pm NEWS & WEATHER UPDATE

WEATHER UPDATE 

A STRONG WIND WARNING REMAINS IN FORCE FOR LAND AREAS OF THE WESTERN HALF OF VITI LEVU, YASAWA AND MAMANUCA GROUP, VANUA LEVU, TAVEUNI AND NEARBY SMALLER ISLANDS AND IS NOW IN FORCE FOR KADAVU AND NEARBY SMALLER ISLANDS, LAU AND LOMAIVITI GROUP.

A STRONG WIND WARNING REMAINS IN FORCE FOR LAND AREA AND WATERS OF ROTUMA. A HEAVY RAIN WARNING REMAINS IN FORCE FOR FIJI. For more information, refer to the latest Special Weather Bulletin on Heavy Rain issued by RSMC, Nadi at http://www.met.gov.fj/afis_prods/20014.txt

Situation: Severe Tropical Cyclone Pam Centre 905hpa Category 5 was analysed near 16.3S 168.9E or about 920km west-northwest of Nadi at 3pm today. It is moving south-southwest at 16km/hr and is expected to lie about 870km west of Nadi midnight tonight. The associated cloud and rainbands affect the group.

Forecast to midnight tomorrow for the Fiji group: Strong northerly winds with average speeds of 45 to 60km/hr and momentary gusts to 80km/hr over the Western half of Viti Levu, Yasawa and Mamanuca Group, Vanua Levu, Taveuni and nearby smaller islands, Kadavu and nearby smaller islands, Lau and Lomaiviti group. Elsewhere fresh northerly winds, gusty at times. Periods of rain, heavy at times and squally thunderstorms. Flash flooding of low-lying areas possible. 

NEWS

WESTERN BUSINESSES ASSIST IN DISASTER PREPARATIONS

Business houses in the Western Division have come forward to assist in the preparation for disaster operations by the Disaster Management office in the West.

This morning Remington Solutions director west Sajid Raza, donated a multi – purpose printer to the divisional emergency operations centre in Lautoka. In presenting this equipment, Raza said his company was mindful of the amount of logistics required to carry out an operation during natural disasters and it was their duty to assist in any way possible.

“We are grateful to have been able to assist through the providing of a multi – purpose printer which we believe will assist in the smooth running of the division EOC in Lautoka,” he said. “We will continue to monitor the weather reports and will be able to assist you in any other way possible should you need us.”

Divisional Planning Officer Western Sitiveni Tavaga said the assistance was another sign of the joint efforts of the public and private sector during natural disasters.

“It is another win for public – private partnership and we thank Mr Raza for his donation towards our efforts in ensuring an effective and efficient operation so that no lives are lost,” Mr Tavaga said.

FARMERS TO BE VIGILANT AS HEAVY RAIN AND STRONG WIND WARNING CONTINUES

The Ministry of Agriculture continues to advise to farmers to be vigilant and prepare for any impending heavy rain and flooding.

This advice comes after a warning that strong wind and heavy rainfall warning remains in force for the whole of the Fiji group despite Tropical Cyclone Pam moving away from the country.

At a briefing with stakeholders conducted this morning (13/03) at the Ministry of Rural and Maritime and National Disaster Management Office, the Fiji Meteorological Office reported that strong northwesterly winds are expected with average speeds of 45-60km/hr. and gusts up to 80km/hr.

The Ministry’s Acting Director Extension, Jone Sovalawa said that farmers, exporters and families living in vulnerable communities or in flood prone areas should take precautionary measures.

“For livestock farmers, measures have been put in place to safeguard breeding stocks and identifying safe areas for livestock evacuation. Farmers with genetic materials are advised to secure possible sites and for nursery to be stored in permanent structures with seeds stored away and with all new planting suspended”, Sovalawa said.

The Land Water Resource Management (LWRM) Division at the Ministry has also checked floodgates and drainage structures to avoid any obstruction of water.

Farmers have also been advised to park vehicles and machineries in safe places away from large trees, unstable structures and flooding areas with temporary structures removed and secured for safety.

Mariners should expect strong north to north-westerly winds with average speeds of 25 to 30 knots and gusting up to 45 knots and rough to very rough seas.

Strong wind warning remains in force for Rotuma land areas and waters.

ROADS UPDATE

Below is the latest update as of 1600hrs Friday 13th March 2015 detailing FRA’s current status and flooding/damage to road infrastructure caused by the heavy rain associated with Cyclone Pam. Occasional rain is being experienced in all divisions and all roads are currently still open. The next situation report will be issued 0800hrs, 14/3/2015.

URGENT HEALTH ADVISORY

Public advisory: Telephone disruptions at Lautoka Hospital

The Ministry of Health and Medical Services is advising the public that the main telephone switchboard at Lautoka Hospital is facing occasional technical disruptions.  The hospital administration has notified Telecom Fiji of this and has confirmed that the disruptions are due to technical issues with the telecom lines.

The Health Ministry is advising members of the public to use the following Easytel numbers should they encounter disruptions in their phone calls via the main switchboard:

  1. 6230700
  2. 6230770

The Ministry of Health & Medical Services apologies for any inconvenience caused and are working with relevant authorities to restore telephone switchboard services to normal.

EMERGENCY CONTACTS

  •  Fire (dial 911)
  • Police (dial 917)
  • Ambulance (dial 919)
  • National Disaster Management Office (3319250)
  • Fiji Meteorological Office (6724888)

Below is latest update as of 1600hrs Friday 13th March 2015 detailing FRA’s current status and flooding/damage to road infrastructure caused by the heavy rain associated with Cyclone Pam

Situation Report Western Division

Depot Road Name Location Description Status of Damage Time/Date Reported Advice to Motorists Action that Will be Taken by FRA Contractor Estimated Opening date Time/Date Resolved How Resolved
All Depots     NA 4:00pm-13/03/2015 All roads are open Regular network patrols/inspections      

 

Situation Report Central Division

Depot Road Name Location Description Status of Damage Time/Date Reported Advice to Motorists Action that Will be Taken by FRA Contractor Estimated Opening date Time/Date Resolved How Resolved
All Depots     NA 4:00pm-13/03/2015 All roads are open Regular network patrols/inspections      

 

Situation Report Eastern Division

Depot Road Name Location Description Status of Damage Time/Date Reported Advice to Motorists Action that Will be Taken by FRA Contractor Estimated Opening date Time/Date Resolved How Resolved
All Depots     NA 4:00pm-13/03/2015 All roads are open Regular network patrols/inspections      

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