Pacific radio news

Samoa begins assessing damages after Cyclone Gita

Samoa has begun assessing the damage in the wake of Gita, which triggered severe flooding over the weekend.

The clean-up in Samoa begins in the wake of Cyclone Gita. Photo/ Twitter - IFRC Asia Pacific.

Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi is meeting National Disaster Relief officers, who have been inspecting the worst affected areas.

Government spokesman Ulu Bismarck Crawley says Gita packed quite a punch but heavy rain is what caused the most damage.

"The damage itself is mainly on vegetation, not much damage on infrastructure in terms of houses. It's mainly on vegetation and some on the roads but no lives were taken so we're very fortunate."

Photo/ Twitter - IFRC Asia Pacific.

Samoa's news manager on TV1, Renee Kahukura, says a co-worker's family home was damaged quite badly.

"One of my reporters, their family home was completely washed away," she says. "A lot of families managed to get out themselves and are pretty much staying with other family members while they try and assess the situation."

She says other co-workers have family in Savaii who they haven't been able to contact.

"We still can't get through some of the emergency services over there and all the medical services so we're still unsure."

Photo/ Twitter - IFRC Asia Pacific.

Kahukura says all the main roads in Upolu have been cleared but some people are still without power and water. She says locals are to be commended for handling the situation well when emergency services weren't available.

"It was hard for people to get through the emergency number, for what was required on the ground. It was pretty much the local villages getting stuck in there and sorting it themselves."

The Land Transport Authority says all roads are now accessible on both islands.

Watch the full interview on Radio 531pi:

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