6 Feb 2007

Fiji floods claim one life

2:34 pm on 6 February 2007

Floods in and around Labasa on Fiji's second island of Vanua Levu are reported to have claimed one life.

Disaster Management officials say a 72-year old man lost his life when he slipped and fell while trying to evacuate his family at the height of the flooding on Sunday night.

About 600 people were evacuated on Sunday night as 12 evacuation centres were opened .

But only one remains open today with about 100 people still sheltering.

Schools and many businesses remained closed today as people cleaned up.

Health authorities have warned people to boil all drinking water and exercise caution when buying frozen food because Labasa is still without electricity.

Meanwhile the finance minister, Mahendra Chaudhry, is touring the flood stricken areas to assess the damage and see what assistance the interim administration can offer.