Torrential rain, gale-force winds forecast

By Soli Wilson 17 February 2020, 4:15PM

As heavy rain continued on Monday, the Samoa Meteorological Service forecast two low pressure systems over the country will bring intensifying conditions including torrential downpours and gale-force winds. 

The developing low pressure systems are along northwest of Savai'i and the southeast of Tutulia, forecasters said on Monday afternoon. The system to the southeast is the more active and is forecast to continue on a southeasterly trajectory and develop slightly. 

"The associated active convergence links to both system is most likely to bring damaging gusty winds, torrential rain and damaging heavy swells [on Monday evening] towards [Tuesday]," the weather service warned. 

The system over Savai'i may follow a similar path, according to forecasters. 

On Monday afternoon the Samoa Shipping Corporation announced that ferry services had been cancelled due to safety concerns arising from rough seas. 

A marine forecast issued on Monday afternoon, northwesterly winds and strong gusts of between 45 to 55 kilometers per hour struck the country’s northern marine waters. 

Waves of between three to four metres have been recorded for both northern and southern marine waters.

A heavy downpour on Monday started just before 12pm and lasted for most of the day

A tropical disturbance in the country’s vicinity - T.D.0.7.F. - remains near Tuvalu approximately 1347km from Samoa.

American Samoa was similarly hit by strong winds and heavy rain earlier in the day. 

The disturbance is predicted has a low likelihood to become a cyclone, forecasters say. 

A tropical disturbance is a tropical cyclone that has surface winds of fewer than 38 miles-per-hour.

Heavy rain with strong and gusty winds, rough seas and developing high swells are expected to continue until Wednesday.

Wind, heavy rain and flood warnings remain in effect for all of Samoa.

Forecast impacts include heavy downpours with poor visibility; strong and gusty winds with flying objects; foggy and slippery roads over mountain passes and ranges; strong river outflows and landslides; strong currents; coastal inundation; and the uprooting of breakable trees. 

By Soli Wilson 17 February 2020, 4:15PM

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