Cyclone Ula To Pass Near Fiji Bringing High Wind, Heavy Rain

admin's picture

Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i

Category 3 storm not expected to make direct hit

By Reginald Chandar

SUVA, Fiji (Fijilive, Dec. 31, 2015) – Tropical Cyclone Ula has slowly intensified and developed into a Category 2 Cyclone and is expected to pass to close to the Fiji group tomorrow.

According to the Fiji Metrological Service office in Nadi, even though the global models together with the forecast track of Tropical Cyclone Ula indicates that it is approaching Fiji from the east, it is expected weaken to as it moves closer to the group.

Nonetheless, the associated active rain bands are expected to bring heavy rain over the country with possibly strong and gusty northwest winds.

Therefore, occasional rain, heavy at times is expected over most places and this may lead to flash flooding.

Tropical Cyclone Ula was located near 15.4 degrees South 167.8 degrees West or about 460km east-southeast of Apia and moving towards the southwest at 10 knots at 1pm today.

It is expected to maintain a southwest track for the next 24 to 48 hours.

[PIR editor’s note: On Jan. 1, 2016 Fiji Times reported that ‘Category three Tropical Cyclone Ula was located about 210km southeast of Pago Pago this morning, heading west southwest towards the islands of central Lau. ... According to the NaDraki weather tropical disturbance 07F will dominate our weather today bringing widespread rain with isolated thunderstorm. Fresh to strong and squally winds on coastal waters with the direction of the wind varying greatly during the day. ... A Strong Wind Warning is now in force for eastern Viti Levu, Vanua Levu, Taveuni and nearby smaller islands, Lau and Lomaiviti Group.’]

On this projected path, it is expected to lie about 360km east-northeast of Vavau (Tonga) at 1pm tomorrow and about 180km northwest of Vavau at 1pm on Saturday.

Tropical Depression (TD07F) was located near 14.9 degrees South latitude and 178.8 degrees East longitude or about 350km north-northeast of Nadi at 1pm today.

It has a central pressure of 995hPa and accelerating as it is moving towards the southeast.

Strong wind warning remains in force for Tuvalu, Tokelau and Kiribati, Cook Islands, Niue and Rotuma.

Rate this article: 
No votes yet

Add new comment