26 Oct 2005

Coral Sea and area north-west of Fiji predicted to spawn tropical cyclones this season

5:11 pm on 26 October 2005

The South Pacific's forecasting centre for tropical cyclones in Nadi, Fiji, is expecting seven to nine such storms to develop over the next six months.

The centre's director, Rajendra Prasad, says cyclones have tended to form more towards the north east of Fiji, more in the region of Tuvalu, east of Tuvalu, north of Samoa, and they have followed the common south-east trajectory.

Mr Prasad says this season, cyclones could form more to the north-west of Fiji, near Solomon Islands, and also in the Coral Sea.

"The typical area, the Coral Sea, which is north-east of Australia and south of Solomon Islands, that area has been fairly inactive over the last couple of seasons, and I hope that this particular season we have cyclones forming in that area as well."

Mr Prasad says conditions this year may favour the development of cyclones to the north and north-west of Fiji, towards the easternmost Solomon Islands.

Mr Prasad says the first cyclone of the season will be called Tropical Cyclone Tam.