26 Oct 2009

Tsunami-hit American Samoa villages may be moved

4:34 pm on 26 October 2009

The US Federal Emergency Management Agency has raised the possibility of relocating some of the villages in American Samoa which were hard hit by the tsunami in September.

The agency expects to be in American Samoa until the beginning of next year.

FEMA official Dennis Coliten told a Chamber of Commerce meeting that some villages on on flood plains may be relocated to prevent further loss of life and property.

The agency has released housing assistance cheques to nearly 900 applicants worth $US4.1 million since the tsunami on 29 September.

More than $US729,000 has been approved for other assistance which includes medical, dental and funeral expenses, personal property and vehicles.

FEMA external affairs officer Kim Walz says restoring power remains a high priority and 40 generators are now supplying power in different parts of the island.

She says the government and the private sector need to work together in the rebuilding effort.