29 Jan 2010

Cyclone Nisha slowing as it nears southern Cooks

6:26 pm on 29 January 2010

Tropical cyclone Nisha is expected to hit the Southern Cook Islands within the next few hours, bringing heavy rain and damaging winds.

Forecasters predict gusts of up to 65 knots from tomorrow, and flooding of low-lying coastal areas.

Charles Carlson, the director of Emergency Management says the islands are at a full warning, with schools and all shops closed.

"The good news is that the cyclone hasn't formed the eye therefore will remain as a category one but then again, anything could happen. It's travelling at about 11 knots at the moment. We're kind of pretty safe, but these strong winds can still do a lot of damage."

Charles Carlson, the Cook Islands director of Emergency Management.