Death toll from ferocious Fiji cyclone rises to at least three

Published: Sunday 21st February 2016 by The News Editor

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A ferocious cyclone tore through the Pacific island nation of Fiji leaving at least three dead and destroying hundreds of homes as people sheltered from 177mph winds.

A curfew was extended through Sunday and police empowered to make arrests without a warrant to ensure order.

The government was responding quickly by clearing vital roads and the main airport has reopened.

George Dregaso from Fiji’s National Disaster Management Office said two people on Ovalau Island died when the house they were sheltering in collapsed on them, and another man was killed on Koro Island.

Police are investigating reports of two more deaths on the main island of Viti Levu, he said.

Officials are trying to establish communications and road access to the hardest-hit areas, and will not know the full extent of the damage and injuries until then.

Cyclone Winston hit Fiji on Saturday and moved westward overnight along the northern coast of Viti Levu. Fiji’s capital, Suva, located in the southern part of the island, was not directly in the cyclone’s path and avoided the worst of its destructive power.

Published: Sunday 21st February 2016 by The News Editor

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