28 Jan 2014

Metservice concerned about lack of rain in cyclone-hit Ha'apai

9:55 pm on 28 January 2014

The Tongan Metservice has warned the National Emergency Office that if Ha'apai does not get more rain before the dry season begins in April, it could experience a severe water shortage.

Health and agricultural officials are concerned with the forecast, saying it could impact on medium and long-term water supply and food security following Cyclone Ian.

The director of Metservice, Ofa Fa'anunu, says Ha'apai needs another two months of consistent rainfall to ensure there is enough in supply for the dry season.

He says it is in deficit because of eight months of drought last year.

"Even though our forecast for the next three months is for near average rainfall, the dry season will start around April and if we do not collect enough rainfall we could be looking at some water problems in Ha'apai."

The director of Metservice, Ofa Fa'anunu.