Fiji Time: 9:16 PM on Thursday 22 February

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Be prepared

LICE MOVONO
Thursday, February 01, 2018

Update: 5:48PM BE PREPARED, monitor the news and know the contact details of your local authorities.

This is the precautionary advice from disaster management officials in light of a combination of weather systems lying slow moving over the country.

According to the director of the Fiji Meteorological Service Ravind Kumar, heavy rains normally expected at this time of the year will be made worse by King Tides expected this weekend.

Yesterday, at a Disaster Management Committee press conference, Mr Kumar and director National Disaster Management Officer director Anare Leweniqila told the media it was important that the public stay alert in the next few days.

"We see that the low pressure is moving to the south of the Fiji as well as looking at the Tropical Cyclyone Fehi has weakened in form to the south of New Zealand. However the trough associated with those and other troughs with this particular system is emerging over Fiji and moving eastwards and southwards," Mr Kumar said.

"We have a trough still remaining over us, Thursday, Friday and to the weekend. It will bring rain and this occasional rain will become frequent and heavy. These will bring heavy rain not in terms of periods but occasional rains will be localised heavy rainfalls."

He said areas such as Rakiraki, Ba and other parts of the western division which large rivers and which are considered flood prone would face increased risk as the king tides would block flood water coming down the waterways from filtering into the ocean.

This hour, the Fiji Met stepped up a public advisory which began yesterday morning reminding the public of heavy rains and strong winds for land and waters of Rotuma.

This is in addition to a 'Heavy Rain Warning' which has been in force for Yasawa and Mamanuca Group, Viti Levu and Vanua Levu, Lau and Lomaiviti Groups since yesterday.

"A strong wind warning´┐Ż is now in force for the Land Areas and Waters of Rotuma," the public advisory said.

"A trough of low pressure with associated cloud and rain remains slow moving over Fiji whilst another trough of low pressure to the north of the group is anticipated to intensify and gradually drift south towards the country."

Mr Leweniqila said that while the NDMO was monitoring the situation and had not activated the DISMAC operations yet, it had already set in place the necessary first protocols which were to alert all district officers, put emergency services and district level on alert and inform the media.

This hour, the Fiji Police Force also issued a warning to the public urging the populace to be safe and to contact their officers if they need help.

Chief Operations Officer Acting ACP Maretino Qiolevu said police officers would move to flood prone areas to ensure the public takes necessary precautions.

"Motorists are requested to drive safely as visibility will be limited and must not attempt to cross flooded bridges," ACP Qiolevu said.

"Mariners especially those traveling in small boats are asked to postpone any unnecessary travel in light of the strong wind warning. Please keep children indoors and away from swimming in flooded areas."

Anyone requiring assistance can contact the Divisional Police Command Centres on;

  • SD COMMAND - 9905529
  • WD COMMAND - 9905457
  • ED COMMAND - 9905563
  • ND COMMAND - 9905722

Weather forecasts can be obtained at the following telephone numbers: 6736006, 9905376 or this website, www.met.gov.fj








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