6 Jan 2004

Niue prepares for arrival of cyclone overnight

12:51 pm on 6 January 2004

The tiny atoll of Niue has been in preparation for the onset of Tropical Cyclone Heta since yesterday, although the storm is not expected to hit until overnight/early morning

Heta which left a path of destruction in Samoa, and prompted a state of emergency in American Samoa, is now moving at a speed of around 15 knots south towards Niue.

Broadcaster, Patrick Lino says the winds associated with Heta are starting to affect the island as people continue to prepare.

"There's quite a few people who are still dong it this morning and looking outside at the moment the wind has certainly picked up speed and its gusting up to about 60-80 kilometres per hour at the moment."

Patrick Lino.

Meanwhile, Air New Zealand says the flight to Samoa via Tonga, to leave at around 3.30 pm this afternoon is on standby, and they're waiting to hear from Tonga as to whether it will leave on time.