PAPEETE, French Polynesia (February 2, 1998 - Radio Australia)---French Polynesia is being threatened by its third tropical storm in three days.

Weather forecasters in Papeete say tropical storm Wes is bearing down on Tahiti and is expected to hit land within 48 hours, Radio Australia reports.

Wes arrives in the wake of tropical storms Ursula and Veli, which have caused considerable damage.

Veli, with winds up to 72 miles an hour, destroyed 45 houses and a school on the outlying islands of Mataiva and Makatea, while the airports on the Pacific atolls of Moruroa –site of former French nuclear testing in the Pacific-- and Tureia were damaged by Ursula.

In addition to the winds, the storms whipped up waves of 10 to 17 feet, the same height as the atolls.

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