Downpour closes Tahiti airport

5:05 pm on 20 February 2017

Torrential rain in French Polynesia has forced the closure of the international airport on Tahiti - the second time in a month.

Tahiti was hit by heavy rain

An earlier clean-up after Tahiti was hit by heavy rain at the end of January. Photo: French Polynesia's Presidency

The rain had flooded part of the runway.

Tonight's Air New Zealand flight to Papeete has been cancelled.

The heavy rain had prompted authorities to ask residents of the Taravaro neighbourhood, which is near the airport, to evacuate.

The latest downpour comes two days after a fire-fighter was killed when he was washed away while trying to clear a blocked drain.

Over the weekend the French overseas minister met victims of last month's deluge which destroyed or damaged hundreds of houses.

Ericka Bareigts was due to visit Ahe in the Tuamotus but adverse weather may force her to change her plans.