7 Feb 2005

Forecasters say Cyclone Meena will pass by Rarotonga, but heading for Mangaia in the Cooks

8:32 am on 7 February 2005

It now appears that Cyclone Meena may pass by Rarotonga in the Cook Islands..although the main island will still feel winds that could reach gale force.

The cyclone is sitting to the northeast and its present track will take it past the island.

Alipate Waqaicelua cyclone forecaster at the Fiji Metservice's Tropical Cyclone Centre has more on Meena's current track:

"Meena is till located to the north east of Rarotonga, but it is within 40 nautical miles or seventy-eight kilometres and its accelerating to the south-east..unfortunately on that path, it it maintains it, it will bring it pretty close or over Mangaia."

High seas will continue to affect Rarotonga and ten metre waves have already been reported .

Parts of the main township of Avarua have been flooded by seawater and sections of its main road are closed.

Storm force winds of up to 75 kilometres per hour are hitting the northern coast.

The cyclone is still packing winds of up to 280kph...but it is said to be weakening.