Reports of minor damage as cyclone warning cancelled for Tonga

The storm warning previously in force for all of Tonga land areas and coastal waters is now cancelled.

There were reports of fallen trees in Tongatapu as tropical cyclone Neil moving on from Tonga’s northern island groups.

Last night there were unconfirmed reports on social media of ongoing power outages at Hihifo, Tongatapu.

Neiafu town officer Vava Lapota told Kaniva this morning Vava’u was not structurally affected.

He said a few plantain plants and trees were blown down.

The Fua’amotu Met Centre says, a gale warning remains in force for the Niuas, Vava’u and Ha’apai land areas and coastal waters.

It said a strong wind warning is now in force for Tongatapu, ‘Eua, Tele-ki-Tonga and Tele-ki-Tokelau land areas and coastal waters.

The heavy rain warning and flash flood advisory previously in force for all of Tonga is now cancelled.

A heavy damaging swell warning remains in force for all of Tonga coastal waters.

Ex-tropical cyclone Neil also referred to as td07f was located near latitude 20.7 south, longitude 174.9 west or 120km south southwest of Lifuka, 55km south of Nomuka, 50km north northeast of Nuku’alofa and 75km north of ‘Eua at 7am this morning.

This system is moving southeast at the speed of 16 knots (30km/hr).

The maximum winds near the centre is about 30-35 knots (57-67 km/hr) with momentary gust up to 45 knots (87km/hr).

On its current track tropical cyclone Neil’s centre is expected to lie nearest to 45km east northeast of Tongatapu and 35km east of ‘Eua at 10:00am this morning.

Associated clouds with occasional rain is expected to affect the group.

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