Samoa prepare for ‘cyclone’

overcast apiaAPIA: MONDAY 21 JANUARY 2012: Whether it is a cyclone or depression, the Samoan translation has edged ‘cyclone’ in the public’s mindset.

The language mix up in last month’s Cyclone Evan, have many people preparing today for an expected cyclone, although yet to be named and forecasters call a depression. Relatives had been contacting each other yesterday expecting a cyclone and warning unaware relatives of the weather warnings.

Most workers are back at home today and the streets of Apia are visibly empty by mid morning.

The Weather Office at Mulinu’u has issued a Gale warning at 5 this morning.

“The Gale Warning is now in effect for northern open waters of Samoa.

High wind advisory remains in effect for all of Samoa.

Flood advisory and Landslide remains in effect for all Samoa vulnerable areas due to moderate to heavy rain at times…..

A Tropical Depression 09F was located at about 12.5 south,176.0west, or 206 nautical miles west northwest of Asau or 259 nautical miles west northwest of Apia at 201300 UTC or3:00a.m. this morning. Tropical Depression 09F continues to move east-northeast at 14 mph with winds of 40-45 mph close to the centre. If it continues on its current track, it centre is expected to be located at about 91 nautical miles northwest from Asau or 142 nautical miles west-northwest  from Apia at 2:00 p.m. today.

For Samoa

Over Waters:
North to northwest winds of 20-30mph, increasing to 40-50 mph within another 12-24 hours to the northern open waters. Seas rough
with significant northwest swells of 12-14 feet. Southern open waters, east to southeast winds of 15-25 mph, increasing to 30mph at
times. Seas moderate to rough with northwest swells of 10-12 feet.

Over Land:
Cloudy with scattered showers, moderate falls possible at times with thunderstorms.
Light variable winds, turning northeast to northwest of 20-30 mph later today,” ends the Forecast.

The Fiji Met Service says a tropical disturbance near Samoa is gradually intensifying and is expected to turn into a cyclone later this

A senior forecaster at the Fiji met service, Amit Singh, says early this morning the system was located about 3500 kilometres north
east of Wallis and it is moving east at about 12 knots.

“It’s gradually intensifying, and we expect it to become a cyclone by tonight, when it will be located north of Samoa.”

He says the system is expected to remain a category three cyclone before heading to the Southern Cook Islands.