24 Oct 2006

Tropical cyclone expected to hit Vanuatu's northern group tomorrow morning

11:58 am on 24 October 2006

A tropical cyclone located between Solomon Islands and Vanuatu is intensifying.

The Fiji metservice's, Vivi Biukoto, says cyclone Xavier has winds of up to 155 kilometres an hour, but they may increase to up to 175 kilometres in the next twenty-four hours.

Ms Biukoto says the cyclone is currently located southeast of Santa Cruz and is expected to reach the northern islands of Vanuatu tomorrow morning.

"At the moment, it's just to the southeast of the Santa Cruz, which is the last island of the Solomons. When it curves tonight, we expect it to go through the northern islands of Vanuatu and that is why Banks Islands and Torres Islands are currently on storm and some of them hurricane alert."

She says residents in Vanuatu should get ready today and stock enough water, food and batteries.

The Solomon Islands metservice says they have no information about damages in the provinces affected there in the last few days, as the communication system is still down.