APIA: THURSDAY 13 DECEMBER 2012: The Samoa Islands remain under a hurricane watch as Cyclone Evan is expected to lie 29 miles South West of Apia at five this afternoon. Strong winds and heavy rains have lashed the island group for the past eight hours and the electricity supply has been turned off for Upolu island except for essential services.
As the country prepares for the cyclone, the National Disaster Management Council has announced that the circumstances do not warrant a state of emergency.
Bananas and other tree crops have fallen over but the country remains calm as the Disaster Council broadcasts regular messages on the radio to ensure public safety.
Cyclone Evan is blowing gusts up to 55 miles per hour and has caused heavy rains and flooding in low-lying areas across the island group.
Meanwhile, in the middle of heavy rain, part of the Seb and Rene’s business opposite the national hospital at Moto’otua caught fire. The Fire and Emergency Services were kept busy not only by the fire, but two pedestrians were injured by flying branches while walking along beach road. One had head injuries and another a broken ankle and the tree branches smashed through the windows of one of the businesses at the John Williams Building at Tamaligi.
Despite the safety warnings, Police had to chase away young men who were collecting firewood from the high seas infront of Aggies hotel. Others were looking for another young man considered lost and was found hanging to some bushes in the Vaisigano river behind the hotel.
The Ministry of Internal Affairs has appealed to the village Mayors for their help to ensure the safety of the people as the country is under hurricane watch.