A slow-moving tropical depression has brought heavy rain to parts of Fiji since 16 December. Some areas have recorded almost 500 mm of rain in 24 hours.
Fiji’s National Disaster Management Office says that over 1,000 people have evacuated their homes to stay in evacuations centres. Flooding and landslides have caused damage to roads, bridges and some property but no fatalities have been reported.
The Rewa river has overflowed, forcing people living along the river and in low-lying areas to evacuate. Some roads have been blocked by floods and landslides, making access difficult and leaving some areas cut off.
Flood and Rain Warnings
Fiji Meteorological Service says that there could be more rain to come as the tropical depression (named TD04) heads towards the nations largest island of Viti Levu. In a statement of 19 December, the service said:
“On the projected path, the centre of TD04F is expected to pass over Viti Levu within next 6 to 12 hours and be close to Kadavu by midday tomorrow.”
Strong wind and heavy rain warning remains in place for the whole Fiji island group. Flood warnings and alerts are also in place, particularly for areas near to the Wainibuka, Rewa, Ba and Qawa rivers.
Fiji’s National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) says 1,363 people are staying in 89 evacuation centres have been set up. Most of those staying in the centres are in Central division (566), with other evacuees in Eastern (362), Northern (273) and Western (162) division. Those numbers are expected to increase over the next 24 hours.
NDMO says that flooding has been reported in at least 10 locations in the provinces of Naitasiri, Rewa, Namosi and Tailevu in Central Division.
In Western Division, the village of Rakiraki in Ra Province, is thought to be one of the worst affected. Fiji Broadcasting Corporation earlier today reported that flooding is now so severe residents have been forced to seek safety on the roofs of their homes.
The severe weather comes ten months after Cyclone Winston, a category five system, swept across much of the country killing 44 people and causing widespread destruction.
Many people are still living in tents as a result, making them more vulnerable to the effects of severe weather this time around.
Emergency Contact Numbers
The government of Fiji has issued a list of emergency contact numbers. If you need urgent assistance, please contact the Emergency Operation Centres on the numbers below:
- National EOC – 3319250 or email@example.com
- Central Division EOC – 3477000/9906320 or firstname.lastname@example.org
- Eastern Division EOC – 3216466/9904589/9905221or email@example.com
- Northern Division EOC – 8811322/9994261 or firstname.lastname@example.org
- Western Division EOC – 6281553/9905909 or email@example.com
24 hours to 17 December
- Viwa – 144 mm
- Monasavu – 136 mm
- Korolevo – 85 mm
- Suva – 96 mm
- Waimanu – 93 mm
24 hours to 18 December
- Monasavu – 120 mm
- Navua – 170 mm
- Nabouwalu – 243 mm
24 hours to 19 December
- Monasavu – 104 mm
- Bukuya – 102 mm
- Viwa – 144 mm
- Rakiraki – 258 mm
- Penang – 316 mm
- Vatukacevaceva – 477 mm
— FijiGov RMDNDM (@FijiGov_RMDNDM) December 18, 2016
Rakiraki town flooded again – river broke its bank at 5am – town is closed – people urged to stay home – roads are closed too pic.twitter.com/7ElgE1kVxD
— Anish Chand (@achandftv) December 18, 2016
B - Rewa
C - Namosi
D - Tailevu
E - Rakiraki
Viwa - December 16 to December 17, 2016
Monasavu - December 16 to December 17, 2016
Navua - December 17 to December 18, 2016
Nabouwalu - December 17 to December 18, 2016
Rakiraki - December 18 to December 19, 2016
Penang - December 18 to December 19, 2016
Vatukacevaceva - December 18 to December 19, 2016
December 16 to December 21, 2016