Updated Forecast November 2018 – April 2019 Tropical Cyclone Outlook
Thank you NIWA for the forecasted weather patterns for our region.
Cyclone in Fiji
The earliest cyclone on record means we need to be preparing for cyclone season now.
Hurricanes, cyclones and typhoons
Typhoons, Hurricanes and cyclones are all tropical storms. They are all the same thing but are given different names depending on where they appear.
When they reach populated areas they usually bring very strong winds and rain which can cause a lot of damage.
Hurricanes are tropical storms that form over the North Atlantic Ocean and Northeast Pacific.
Cyclones are formed over the South Pacific and Indian Ocean. (This is us here in Fiji)
Typhoons are formed over the Northwest Pacific Ocean. (source BBC.co.uk)
Prepare for a cyclone
Read the post Weather in Fiji. This covers the basics of food water and housing. The good thing about preparing for a cyclone is that you cannot do it too early. All your supplies you buy now in September will last until May when the season is over.
In addition some good ideas for Fiji residents who might have an emergency supplies carton somewhere: bury it. There is no point having an emergency supply of toilet paper and tinned goods if it blows away.
Further to the information in last years post, here is a handy video showing what each category of cyclone can look like. The categories for Typhoon, Hurricane or Cyclone are all the same. Category 1 being smallest and category 5 being largest and most devastating.
There is talk of a new Category 6 being added to cyclone classifications. TC Winston hit Fiji in February 2016 with winds measuring above 280km/h (175mph) which is much higher than the current category 5 upper limit of 230km/h.
Prediction for 2018/19
Philip Duncan, Head Forecaster from Weather Watch in NZ has said “To see a cyclone form so early in the season may be an indicator of bigger storms to come this summer.”
The local Fijians always say if the breadfruit and mango trees are bountiful then a cyclone is coming. I am not sure that my mango trees are that smart, but they are certainly loaded at the moment. Therefore I am going to stock up on batteries, water, candles and a new deck of cards!