Pacific

Cyclone could become superstorm


TONGA has declared a state of emergency as the Pacific island kingdom braces for a direct hit by a powerful cyclone that is threatening to become a Category Five superstorm.

Severe Tropical Cyclone Gita has already created havoc in neighbouring Samoa and is gathering pace as it approaches Tonga.

Acting Prime Minister Semisi Sika issued a nationwide alert, saying he was “satisfied that an emergency is happening or is about to happen.”

The Fiji Meteorological Service predicted Gita will become a Category Five storm — the top of the scale — before reaching Tonga at 7pm Monday night (5pm AEDT).

It is already packing gusts of 275km/h as it sits off the east coast of the country’s most populous island, Tongatapu.

Tonga’s Fua’amotu Weather Forecasting Centre warned residents could expect “very destructive hurricane force winds”.

Read the full article at: http://www.news.com.au/technology/environment/tonga-declares-state-of-emergency-as-cyclone-gita-threatens-to-become-category-5-superstorm/news-story/c876b0ec92931f1ff3875e101414c96e

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