19 Dec 2016

Fiji floods slow to recede

1:59 pm on 19 December 2016

The director of Fiji's disaster management office says normality is slowly returning after a weekend of widespread flooding.

Family affected by Fiji flooding

Family affected by Fiji flooding Photo: FijiVillage

Large parts of the central and northern divisions have been underwater after a tropical depression moved past the country over the weekend, damaging crops and infrastructure.

Akapusi Tuifagalele said more than 1,000 people sought shelter in evacuation centres, and a landslide destroyed a school, a health centre and two houses on Qamea island, in the country's north.

He said that today, river levels are slowly starting to recede, a hospital in Nausori that was relocated has moved back, and evacuation centres are starting to close.

"We are not out of the woods yet. We are slowly moving back to normalcy, but the operation still goes on and it's going to take a few days."

"We would expect today, or tomorrow, when the water clears for officials to go out and do their damage assessment, especially for agriculture and infrastructure like roads, and they can come back with estimated costs of damages."

Mr Tuifagalele said while the tropical depression has passed, rain is still forecast for the next few days so people should remain vigilant.

Landslide in Veisari which is currently blocking Queens Highway.

A landslide in Veisari blocked Queens Highway. Photo: Inosi Kania/Fiji village

Get the new RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs