9 Dec 2013

Residents in Tonga's Ha'apai islands told to conserve water

6:42 am on 9 December 2013

Emergency management officials in Tonga say residents in the drought affected island group of Ha'apai will need to start conserving water if there is no rain in the next two weeks.

The country's Meteorological Service says rainfall in the islands of Ha'apai and Tonga's main island Tongatapu has been 200 millimeters less than expected since September.

The head of Tonga's National Emergency Management Office, Leveni Aho, says the drought is not serious but it warns that water sources are limited and residents may have to ration if there's insufficient rainfall during the next fortnight.

"I would say that they would have to start you know conservation and make sure that they use it wisely. So if these things continue for a couple of weeks or even up to Christmas time then it might have to look at some other options of getting water to these places."

Leveni Aho says emergency management officials are monitoring the situation closely.