Heavy rain, winds to continue: Meteorology Division

The Samoa Meteorology Division has urged the public to exercise caution as it projects strong wind and heavy rain to continue until Thursday.

The bad weather on Wednesday has already led to the cancellation of the ferry service between Upolu and Savai’i.

In a severe weather information bulletin issued on Wednesday evening, the Meteorology Division has projected heavy rain and issued wind and flood warnings.

The Meteorology Division’s Principal Scientific Officer, Silipa Mulitalo, said in an email response to the Samoa Observer that heavy rain could persist until Thursday due to a moist northerly wind flow.

“The atmospheric conditions remain unsettled and there is still a risk for thunderstorm development within Samoa’s forecast area for today (Wednesday) and tomorrow (Thursday),” he said. 

“Friday and Saturday it should clear up in terms of cloud coverage but brief showers of rain are still possible in some areas, particularly the northern districts of larger islands.”

Asked if there is any potential for flooding due to the heavy rain, he said: “Yes, there has been a lot of precipitation lately fallen on the ground.”

“The soil conditions are highly saturated which can make excess rain difficult to infiltrate. So there is still flood and landslides risk to vulnerable areas.”

He further explained that there are warnings valid for strong winds and heavy rain since Tuesday and they have publicly disseminated forecast information from Sunday and Monday regarding the current weather system that’s affecting the country.

Mr. Mulitalo urged the public to stay up to date with the latest weather forecast and warning and follow advice from the Disaster Management Office and emergency services.

The caution from the Meteorology Division comes on the back of the Samoa Shipping Corporation announcing in a Facebook post on Wednesday afternoon, that all remaining ferry services on Wednesday between Mulifanua and Salelologa were canceled due to the bad weather.

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