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Samoa's death toll from Tropical Cyclone Evan at 5

APIA -- Death toll following last week’s Cyclone Evan which caused havoc in Samoa has risen to five, after the discovery of a male victim at Vaiala, according to a statement from the Prime Minister’s Office.

It also says that the victim has been identified and the missing persons has risen from 10 to 12.  Among the missing are the fishing men, who went out to sea prior to the cyclone slamming into the Samoa.

OVERSEAS ASSISTANCE

Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi has thanked the people and government of American Samoa for immediate relief supplies, ferried over by the Lady Naomi, which arrived Sunday evening in Samoa, according to the statement.

“The consignment, which arrived immediately after Cyclone Evan had just passed over, was very timely.  It was exactly the sort of supplies that we urgently needed,” said Tuilaepa.

The shipment comprised of 13 pallets of bottled water, dry foods, clothing and tents.  Another shipment is expected to arrive today Apia from American Samoa aboard the Fotu o Samoa ferry.

The Governor’s Office in American Samoa is coordinating the territorial government’s relief drive and donated items are accepted at the A.P. Lutali Executive Office Building in Utulei and the Procurement Office in Tafuna.

The most pressing needs for Samoa at this point are bottled water, canned food, clothing and tents.  The Governor’s Office is working on getting another shipment out this week on board the Lady Naomi’s sail out of Pago Pago on Friday (Saturday in Samoa).

The Samoa government news release also states that the Australian government has pledged cash and other assistance, which includes materials such shelter kits, tents, tools, generators, bedding and linen and sundry. Additionally, the New Zealand government has also pledge more disaster aid.

ELECTRIC AND WATER

Electricity has been restored to much of the Apia area and  electricity access should be fully restored to the whole country by Friday evening.
Regarding water service, Disconnections to the urban water supply system at Afiamalu, Vailima, Vailele, Tapatapao and Fuluasou have been fixed. Samoa Water Authority are still working on problems at Malololelei, Alaoa, Vaivase Uta and Fagalii Uta.

DISPLACED

The government says some 38 shelters are now operating across Upolu, sheltering 5047 people and most people are rebuilding their homes in the daytime and returning to the shelters at nightfall.

DAMAGE ASSESSMENTS

On-ground assessments have been completed for all of Upolu, bar Laulii to Aleipata. According to  the government statement,  the assessments determine the extent of damage, house and infrastructure destruction, displaced and affected persons, impact on agriculture and farming the services needed.

A team will be sent to Manono Island this week  where initial reports put damages at a minimum. Another team will also inspect the island of Savaii later this week where water and electricity services, largely, were not interrupted by Cyclone Evan.

Samoa News will update the online edition as new information comes thru from the Prime Minister’s Office.  Samoa News reporter Fili Sagapolutele contributed to this report from Pago Pago.



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