Cyclone on its way with likelihood it will be a Cat 3

Nuku’alofa – January 16, 2020: 1pm (Nuku’alofa Times): Tongans and all those currently residing in Tonga have been advised to prepare for a cyclone as a tropical depression moves in close to Fiji, with predictions showing it will also hit Tonga.

The Director of Tonga Meteorology or Tonga MET Ofa Fa’anunu confirmed this afternoon that there is “a high possibility the current depression will turn to a Category 2 cyclone when it comes to Tonga”.

He also added there is a likelihood that it will increase to a Cat3.

Mr Fa’anunu said locals living in low lying areas need to start planning to move.

Those on the islands of Niuatoputapu and Niuafo’ou have also been warned not to go out to sea on small boats and await confirmation of the cyclone intensity and movement.

The Tropical Cyclone Operation Centre in Fua’amotu was activated this morning, with the National Emergency Management Office also on standby.

Mr Fa’anunu said the Tongan group of islands should be expecting to experience winds and rain by Saturday.

He added that everyone should be keeping themselves updated with Tonga MET news on Radio Tonga or on their website.

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