17 Dec 2012

Almost 4,000 in evacuation centres in Fiji's north after Evan

4:02 pm on 17 December 2012

Fiji's National Disaster Management Office says almost 4,000 people in the northern division are in evacuation centres as the authorities prepare to assess the damage from Cyclone Evan.

The cyclone caused what's been described as an inland tsunami in parts of Samoa's capital Apia over the weekend, killing four people before moving south west over Fiji's northern islands.

The director of the disaster management office, Manasa Tagicakibau says 3,700 people were evacuated before the storm hit and the evacuation centres are well supplied.

He says the northern division commissioner told him earlier today that the weather is till too bad for a damage assessment to be carried out.

"There's damage to weak structures like makeshift sheds and broken trees, a few power lines and a few power cuts in respective areas. But as soon as they feel that it's safe for their assessment officers to move out, they'll move out, do their assessment and gives us information."

Manasa Tagicakibau says he is not sure how many people have been evacuated in the western division, which is bearing the full force of the cyclone now.