13 Jan 2004

Services restored to Niue

5:13 pm on 13 January 2004

The island of Niue has made huge inroads in the cleanup after the tiny atoll was devastated by tropical cyclone Heta almost a week ago.

But there are still grave concerns about the fire risk, with the cyclone demolishing nearly 100-percent of the forestry.

There is some good news though, as Elma Ma'ua reports from Niue.

"Power and water has been restored to 95% of the island. Television is also back on air as well as the local telephone lines, giving the locals a morale booster. The Minister for Essential Services, Bill Motufoou, says while there is still much work to be done, the heavy machinery that is expected to arrive this week will go a long way towards cleaning up the larger debris. He says one positive thing has come out of the cyclone, that is they can now rebuild their houses without asbestos. The Hercules which flew in today with the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Phil Goff, is carrying essential supplies to combat the problem."