As predicted, a tropical cyclone – named Cook — formed overnight and is currently positioned just to the north-west of Efate. It has now intensified to a Category 2 storm, and is slowing down, with destructive storm force winds of 95km/h, gusting to 130km/h hitting Efate and islands in the rest of Shefa and Malampa provinces. Gale force winds will continue to affect Sanma, Penama provinces, then later on today, Tafea province too.
Because the cyclone is both intensifying and slowing, residents are advised to take shelter and stay indoors until further notice, as the wind speed may pick up significantly. Flash flooding and power outages have been reported on Efate.
Vanuatu’s own meteorological service is still low-key about the two potential cyclones near Vanuatu, and is not tracking the tropical depression between Solomon Islands and New Caledonia.
VMS says the chance of the other system, Tropical Disturbance 09F, turning into a cyclone is between 10% and 60% likely within 24 hours.
However, The US Navy’s Joint Typhoon Warning Center says Read the rest of this entry »