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IAN Causes Widespread Destruction on Tonga Islands

Posted by feww on January 12, 2014


Super Cyclone IAN destroys or damages 70% of homes in Tonga’s northern islands: Emergency Officials

The massive cyclone, probably the worst to hit Tonga in recorded history, slammed into the northern islands on Saturday on its way to the main island.

ian BDIR 12jan14
Severe Tropical Cyclone IAN.  IR [BD Enhancement] Satellite Image. Recorded at 02:52UTC on Sunday, January 12, 2014.  Source: CIMSS/SSEC/WISC.

Tonga’s director of emergencies has expressed grave concerns for the islands in the Ha’apai island group where communications have been cut, said ABC Australia.

The full extent of damage from the cyclone is not yet known because there is no communication with much of the Ha’apai group of islands, ABC Australia quoted him as saying.

“The picture comes to hand now, it was really bad,” he said.

“I think it was 70 per cent of the housing of the two islands that we have access to now have been affected – destroyed or partially damaged.

“We have got some people sheltered in some of the evacuation centres, buildings and some of the churches.”

The island of Lifuka is reportedly the worst hit area.

IAN has since weakened to a Cat 3 cyclone, moving away from Tonga and out into the ocean.

Aus Cyclone scale -s
Australian Tropical Cyclone Intensity Scale. Copyright: FIRE-EARTH Blog.

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