7 Feb 2024

Strong wind warning remains in Southern Cook Islands as Tropical Cyclone Nat moves away

2:03 pm on 7 February 2024
Tropical Cyclone Nat track map.

Tropical Cyclone Nat track map. Photo: Fiji Meteorological Service

Tropical Cyclone Nat is heading away from the Cook Islands and moving towards French Polynesia.

The Fiji Meteorological Service cyclone track map shows the category 2 storm is set to pass below Papeete and close to Hereheretu.

It has cancelled a gale warning for waters to the north of the southern Cook Islands, but a strong wind alert is still in place.

The weather office said the cyclone is slow moving east-southeast at about 24 knots and on its current path, it is expected to be 430km east-northeast of Mauke Island and 640km east of Aitutaki at 2pm Tuesday, Cook Islands time (Wednesday, 1pm NZT).

A strong wind warning remains for land areas of Aiutaki and Mauke Islands, along with a coastal inundation warning for the islands' eastern and northern coastal low-lying areas.

French Polynesia

Tropical Cyclone Nat is now hovering over parts of French Polynesia but no significant damage has been reported.

French Polynesia's deputy director of civil protection Cédric Rigolet told public broadcaster Polynésie la 1ère the population should remain vigilant and follow instructions from the civil protection services and its emergency unit.

He said changes were still likely in the evolution of Nat's passage and potency.

The cyclones was forecast to pass close to the Austral group of islands, including Rimatara and Rurutu, as well as the Society Islands.

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs