7 Feb 2008

Damage reports from cyclone Gene in Vanuatu are in

11:22 am on 7 February 2008

The Disaster Management Office in Vanuatu says cyclone Gene caused damage to Futuna island in the country's south but spared other nearby islands.

The cyclone hit Fiji first and seven people were killed and thousands were affected by the cyclone.

Job Esau from Vanuatu's disaster management office says workers have now assessed all islands in Vanuatu's south, where the cyclone struck next.

Mr Esau says people's lives were spared and no one is believed to have been injured, but the cyclone caused devastation to most food gardens on Futuna Island.

"We have received reports from Tafea province, which is taking care of Erromango, Tanna Aniwa, Futuna and Aneityum. Only Futuna Island has received some significant damage, especially to crops."

Job Esau says Gene completely destroyed about 15 homes on Futuna island.