Samoa updates damage assessments and repairs
APIA — The National Disaster Council in Samoa will meet again today (Monday in Samoa) to discuss assessments from agencies and determine the full extent of the destruction, caused by tropical cyclone Evan that killed four while 8 are still missing.
This is according to information released by the Prime Minister’s Office following last Friday’s meeting of the Council and chair by the country’s leader Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi.
During this meeting, the Electric Power Corporation chief executive officer Tologata Tile reported that electricity was expected to be restored along Beach Road by this evening and that much of the Tanugamanono Station has been damaged by water flow. Some needed machinery parts are expected to arrive early next week.
Tologata also reported that linesmen were already at work restoring fallen power lines in the rural areas and electricity was still available in most parts of Savai’i.
Regarding the status of water supply, the Samoa Water Authority says much of the water supply has been damaged by heavy flooding. Additionally, main water pipelines were severely damaged by flooding at Lelata, up at Malololelei and Fuluasou, servicing the wider western-Apia area. The Authority reported that water flow along the Vaisigano River is still strong and is hampering repair and restoration work.
Regarding roads, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) reported that all of the main roads around Upolu and Savaii have been cleared of fallen trees, barring a small stretch at Tiavi and the Maliolio River in Savaii which also flooded.
LTA chief executive Leasi Ioane Galuvao pointed out that the major task at the moment is clearing roads into homes and properties of those affected by the heavy flooding in the Vaimauga District.
Information from the meeting, also states that several countries and international development agencies, through their local representatives, informed government that initial grants, supply and humanitarian assistance have been approved towards immediate relief efforts for Samoa.
The New Zealand government has approved NZ$50,000 as well as offering aerial survey support, the United States US$50,000 through the Red Cross Society and a grant of US$50,000 from the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) as well as technical assistance in damage assessments. Representatives of the Australian and Chinese Embassies and a representative of the Japanese Government informed the Council that their governments are in the final stages of approving assistance for immediate relief work.