TONGA TORNADO DAMAGE OVER $100,000

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WELLINGTON, New Zealand (RNZI, Aug. 24) – Officials say a tornado that hit the central district of Tonga’s main island at the weekend caused between US$100,000 and US$150,000 in damage.

The tornado damaged houses and two church halls in Ha’akame and Ha’alalo on the main island of Tongatapu.

It also damaged trees and destroyed crops such as tapioca and banana.

Male’u Takai from the National Disaster Office says a preliminary damage assessment has been done.

"There were about 15 boarding houses affected and we have donated a few tents and tarpaulins just to provide temporary shelters to those whose boarding houses were affected."

August 25, 2004

Radio New Zealand International: www.rnzi.com

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