Tropical Cyclone Yasa Expected To Be Category 5: Here’s What You Need To Do

“Do not be caught off guard by this latest storm. Know the location of your nearest evacuation centre,” Mr Bainimarama said.
16 Dec 2020 11:09
Tropical Cyclone Yasa Expected To Be Category 5: Here’s What You Need To Do
Projected path of TC Yasa, Source: Fiji Meteorological Services

Tropical Cyclone Yasa is expected to intensify into a Category 5 cyclone and make landfall by midday Friday. This is expected to affect the whole of Fiji at different times. (Refer to top map)

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama has urged Fijians to remember the wrath of TC Harold and to prepare for TC Yasa.

“Do not be caught off guard by this latest storm. Know the location of your nearest evacuation centre,” Mr Bainimarama said.

“We should all prepare now for heavy rain, damaging winds, coastal inundation, and flooding across the country.

“I urge communities to use this time to trim tree branches, clean drains, and board up homes, prep emergency kits, and take other steps to keep your homes and communities safe.

“People are advised to stay out of floodwaters, especially children as the waters are deadly, unpredictable, and can carry debris that can maim or kill.

“We don’t want to see reports of young Fijian’s lives lost due to a lack of supervision,” he said.

“While we are a day away from the storm’s arrival, I urge our fisherman: Please do not go out fishing – this is not the time to test your skills at sea. Listen to warnings and wait until you are given clearance to do so – no fish is worth the risk.”


TC Yasa projected path

As of 5.28pm yesterday, Fiji Meteorological Service announced the following:

  • A Tropical Cyclone Alert for: Yasawa and Mamanuca Group, northern half of Viti Levu (from Nadi through to Korovou), northern half of Vanua Levu (from Nabouwalu through to Votua to Labasa through to Udu Point) and Rotuma;
  • A TC alert will be in force for the rest of the country from today.
  • A Heavy Rain Warning is now in force for: the Yasawa and Mamanuca Group, eastern half of Viti Levu, Vanua Levu, Taveuni and nearby smaller islands.
  • A Heavy Rain Alert is now in force for the rest of the Fiji Group.
  • A Flash Flood Alert remains in force for the low-lying areas and areas adjacent to small streams for the interior of the main island;
  • These include upper Nadarivatu, Monasavu, upper Wainimala, upper Sigatoka and upper Nadi catchment. A Gale Warning remains in force for open waters between Fiji and Rotuma.
  • TC Yasa has rapidly intensified and developed further into a category 4 system at midday yesterday.
  • On the forecasted track TC Yasa is expected to be located about 475km westnorthwest off Yasawa-i-Rara or 445 northwest off Viwa or 430km west-southwest off Rotuma at midday today.
  • By midday on Thursday the cyclone is expected to be located about 175km northwest of Yasawa-i-Rara or 260km north-northwest off Nadi.

Meanwhile, Tropical Cyclone Zazu (category 2) is currently over Tonga and is expected to drift southeastwards away from Tonga and posing no direct threat to the Fiji Group. F


Strong Wind Warning

As TC Yasa moves closer to the northwest of the group today, it will bring about strong winds with average speeds of 45km per hour gusting to 65km per hour over the whole of Fiji.

These winds are not destructive but will be dangerous for those navigating Fiji Waters. Very destructive winds with average speed of 165km per hour gusting up to 230km per hour is expected over Yasawa and Mamanuca Group, western parts of Viti Levu and Vanua Levu early on Thursday and gradually affect the rest of the group on later Thursday.

These winds can cause widespread destruction to properties and infrastructure, severe disruption of electrical power distribution and communication services. It can also cause total damage to crop and vegetation.

Continuous heavy rain will also start to affect the group from today. Due to anticipated widespread heavy rain, there is risk of river flooding and flash flooding of low lying and flood prone areas. With the ground already saturated, there is also risk of landslides in landslide prone areas.

As TC Yasa moves closer towards the group, high waves of possibly more than six metres is expected which poses the risk of storm surge and coastal inundation along coastlines of Fiji especially over Yasawa and Mamanuca Group, northern half of Viti Levu and northern half of Vanua Levu from tomorrow.

The waves will be enhanced during high tides. Sea conditions will be too dangerous for sailing and other sea activities. Adverse weather conditions is anticipated to persist over the country until Saturday and expected to start easing from Sunday.

The current situation is closely monitored, and any alert and warning will be issued as and when significant changes are anticipated.

Members of the public are advised to remain updated with the latest weather information




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