13 Jan 2004

American Samoa set to be declared federal disaster area after Cyclone Heta

11:51 am on 13 January 2004

The US disaster relief agency in anticipating that President Bush will declare American Samoa a federal disaster area following last week's devastation by Cyclone Heta.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has already moved to send personnel and relief supplies and last Wednesday, six FEMA officials arrived for an initial damage assessment.

Governor Togiola Tulafono said the team recommended that the territory be declared a disaster area and he expects word from the White House this week.

A local official in Pago Pago says supplies will not be distributed until the president has issued the declaration.