Situation Report from the NEMO regarding TC Ian – Haapai Group


15 January 2014

A report from the Disaster Controller at the National Emergency Coordination Cerntre (NEMO), regarding Tropical Cyclone Ian

Background Information

TC Ian first emerged as a threat on Monday 6 January 2014, when it was upgraded from a tropical depression to a cyclone. On that day the National Operations Centre was activated in standby mode.

On Wednesday 8 January the National Emergency management Committee was convened by the Minister of Infrastructure/Deputy Prime Minister and authorisation was given to the Director of NEMO to fully activate the Emergency Operations Centre when the situation required it.

At 1.00 PM on Thursday 9 January the Director of NEMO advised the Minister that he had exercised his authority to fully activate the Emergency Operations Centre. The Centre then commenced 24/7 operation monitoring the situation, planning, communicating at district and town level, ensuring that District Operations Committees were working with the people and implementing local emergency plans.

A State of Emergency was declared for Vava’u and Ha’apai at 0800hours 11 January 2014. A meeting between the National Emergency Management Committee, followed by a meeting with Development Partners and the media were conducted to update these stakeholders on the situation.

In the afternoon and evening of Saturday 11 January, 2014, Tropical Cyclone Ian passed directly through the Ha’apai island group. Telephone communication was cut, but some reports were received by satellite. The death of an elderly woman in Pangai was reported. Reports of injuries were also received.

The National Emergency Operations Committee met on the evening of 11 January
2014 and requested His Majesty’s Armed Forces to send two patrol boats, VOEA Savea and VOEA Pangai to Ha’apai. The vessels carried immediate relief items and personnel to undertake assessments of the impact of the cyclone on the communities in the group. Both patrol boats arrived in the group and provided reports during Sunday 12 January 2014. The Deputy Prime Minister led the mission in his capacity as Chair of the National Emergency Operations Committee.

The New Zealand Government provided a P3-Orion to conduct an aerial survey of damage to the Ha’apai group. Orion departed Fua’amotu Airport at 1213hours and expected to overfly the Ha’apai Island groups at about 1236hours. This mission was completed and the Orion returned to Nuku’alofa and the photographic data arrived at NEMO at around 5.30 PM.

On 13 January 2014, the Prime Minister flew to Ha’apai to inspect damage from the cyclone, and consult with the Deputy Prime Minister who is heading the relief effort, the Governor, and members of the District Emergency Operations Centre. The New Zealand High Commissioner to Tonga and the Australian Deputy High

Commissioner also visited Ha’apai to make general assessments of the impact and for consular duties. Communication with Ha’apai was significantly improved with the restoration of the Digicel network.

The National Emergency Operations Committee (NEOC) was convened and chaired by Brigadier General ‘Uta’atu, Chief of Staff, HMAF. The committee was briefed by NEMO Director on the results of immediate needs analyses. The Committee also considered the propriety areas of need for the impacted communities. International Development partners attended a meeting to and discuss the current situation and relief needs in Ha’apai. There was an information session from the Royal New Zealand Air Force crew at both the NEOC and the International Partners’ meetings, in which the results of the aerial survey were presented.

At 2.00 PM, Tuesday, 14 January, 2014, a meeting of the NEOC was convened. The meeting endorsed the resources identified for recovery in Ha’apai in Situation Report 4.

A meeting was held with Development Partners at 3.30 PM on 14 January 2014. The meeting discussed the resources needs as outline in the Situation Report. One key point covered in the meeting was the logistics issue in relation to getting relief and recovery materials to the outer islands. It was suggested that a landing barge be found. It was noted that an LCM-8 landing barge had been used previously in tonga and that such a vessel would be ideal for the task required. In relation to air cargo and travel, France has offered the services of a CASA aircraft. This plane can carry a payload of 3 tonnes and has the capacity to land on the Lifuka airstrip.

Our Treasury has confirmed the Account Details as follows;

Account Number: 20001026257*
Swift Code:     BTONTONU*
BSB: 039046*

It is important to note that the above Relief Account is to cater for all funding assistance received from the public, development partners,charitable organizations and contributions to the Cyclone Ian Relief. The Account will be administered including reporting requirements by the Ministry of Finance and National Planning. Eligible expenditures from the above account will be subject to the National Emergency Management Committee (NEMC).



•No further reports from Vava’u received since 0800hours 14 January 2014


Food Security
The Wesleyan Church has tody prepared over twenty tonnes of food and non-food items to be sent to Ha’apai. Other Churches plan to collect and send similar amounts in the coming weeks.

ADRA plans to provide food for 160 families of 6 members each; NEMO will provide coordination for the project.

Nutrition, Water, Sanitation & Hygiene

CEO, Tonga Water Board, reported on 14 January 2014 the following situation for Pangai Water

•Water supply system back to normal, that is all 3 low level tanks (10,000 litres each full) and high level Tank (feeder tank 5000 litres) full and continuous feed from low level tanks

•Two (2) 44 gallons diesel drums and one (1) 20 litres 30 SAE on board MV Pulupaki

•The above diesels are for the stand-by generator and two (2) TR-1 high speed pumps

•Announcement on 89.5FM for all customers to report any damage to water pipeline to minimize water-loss and costs of operation

•Constant communication with Ha’apai Branch Manager is ongoing

Report from Ministry of Lands & Survey that they will be sending surveyors to
Ha’apai this afternoon

Caritas has undertaken to look after water in Lifuka.

Information from the Ministry of Education on the extent of the damage is attached to this SitRep.

Caritas has been requested to undertake assessments of people at evacuation centres and provide counselling when required.

The People’s Republic of China has committed to providing 400 tents. This is a significant contribution to the shelter area of needs.

Tonga Power no longer requires electricians, but does need sufficient cable for 900 houses. The organisation also needs support to procure power poles.

Early Recovery
•Rotary has donated 260 Emergency Response Kits, which will be sent to
Ha’apai by the weekend.

Immediate Personnel Needs for the Relief-Recovery Process:

In addition to the material needs outlined in SitRep 1, the following short-term human resource needs have been identified to boost numbers in the early stages of the relief and recovery.

-1 water and sanitation expert to evaluate the situation
-1 logistics expert to develop to assess needs and develop a logs plan
-rapid-deployment personnel to undertake detailed assessments for recovery: 6 would enable 3 teams of 2
-1 project planning office to assist in the reconstruction program.
-1 management support for NEMO (already on board from NZ)
-1 information management/needs mapping expert (already on board from OCHA Fiji)

Offers Made
The following items and services have been offered in support of the Tongan relief and recovery program.



Country/organistaion Tasks able to be
Date offer from Nature of Offerr undertaken when availabe accepted
Able to undertake
11.1.2014 NZ P130 recce plane assessment 12.1.2014 yes
transport supplies
11.1.2014 Tonga Digicell Convair to islands 13/14.1.2014
11.1.2014 NZ 50K emergency items 11.1.2014
13.1.2014 Tonga emergency kits, 13.1.2014
Boat,supplies and
staff, second boat
available if
required, medical
volunteers. Can sea Mercy
also reach to USA assistance –
for supplies and visit/assess outer
13.1.2014 Sea Mercy Org staff if required islands, 5-7days (in Fiji)
14.1.2014 NZ Rotary 260 ERK kits response kits
50k emergency kit
prepositioned with
the TRC already now/already
14.1.2014 Australia HC and available assist people used yes
15.1.2014 Chinese HC 400 tents 17.1.2014 yes
deliveries to
15.1.2014 France Casa airplane Ha’apai 16.1.2014



CEO, Ministry of Revenue and Customs advised on 13 January 2014 that the declaration of emergency is for Vava’u and Ha’apai only therefore proper Customs clearance procedures will still have to be followed in Tongatapu.

Assessment Activities
NEMO is continuing to conduct assessments of the impact of TC Ian, through the District Emergency Operations Committee. It has identified key areas of need and specific resources required to support the people affected by the cyclone of Ha’apai in rebuilding their communities.

Leveni ‘Aho
Disaster Controller



Degree of
School Building damage SPECIFICS
1 GPS Faleloa Classrooms
2 crassroom building
(9mx17m) major completely destroyed
(house the office) all resources (photocopier, printer, papers, reading
soaked wet
5-classroom building 10 corrugated roofing iron sheet torn, 20 (from 50 )
louvre sets (7 blades) damaged
3 Staff Quarter 1 quarter -kitchen destroyed
1 quarter -roof removerd, 3 walla damaged and 2
louvre sets (7-blades)
1 quarter -2 louvre sets broken
GPS Fotua 4 classroom building ( 1 -1 crm bdg;
2 3- 3crm bldg)
1 crm bdg demolished 1 crm (clas 6) completely destroyed, with desk, form
and reading resources
1 3-crm bldg), major damage 1 crm with roof and wall torn, 60 roof perfolated
1 3-crm bldg), major damage 80% roof torn and 70% louvres destroyed
all guttering system damaged
1 toilet unit with roof torn
3 GPS Koulo 2 crm building
1 building (3 crm) minor 3 broken louvre sets
1 building (1 crm) major roof removed, desk and chairs crushed
2 staff quarter major roofand ceiling removed, all cuttering damaged
4 GPS Pangai 3 classroom buildings major
1 bldg ( 3-crm ) major all roof removed (claas 4-6); all desk, chairs and
reading resources damaged
1 bldg ( 3-crm ) major 16 roofing sheets torn, 3 doors broken, 6 louvre sets
(8 lades) damaged
1 bldg ( 3-crm ) demolished all woooden floor house (for ECE) destroyed
5 GPS Hihifo 2 buildings both minor 2 doors removed, 3 louvre sets (8 blades) damaged
6 GPS Ha’ano 2 buildings
1 (new) building minor virtually safe except few broken louvres
1 wooden) major 50% roof and wall removed
toilet block major whole roof removed
GPS Fakakai 1 buildings (4-crm) major 100% roof destroyed and all cuttering damaged;
7 40% wall damaged



2 Staff quarters (2 crm) demolished both quarters
8 GPS Lofanga 1 building (6 crm) major 4 sheet at roof and cap removed (both ends)
reading resources soaked, room flooded
No staff quarter (teacher stayed in classroom) )
GPS 60 %trust and roof removed,so as 60% shutter
9 Mo’unga’one 1 bldg (3 crm) major window
1 Staff quarter (3 bdr) 50% roof destroyed, solar lighting damaged
10 Ha’apai HS Classrooms Major
admin block 2 doors torn and all windows damaged-
2 Blackboard torn and destroyed
broken louvres – one whole classroom & 40% ceiling
fell off(Form 7),
1 classroom 70% windows broken
concrete floor cracking (5cm wide and 7m long)
flooding of rooms
all Cutter system completely destroyed
Home Economics (3 x room 5% louvers broken
crm length)
Industrial Arts Block 4 Doors Destroyed, 10% louvers broken
Library (double crm
length) 40% louvers broken, 30% ceiling fell off.
Scice lab (2 crms0 & 1
storeroom major Flooded and chemiccals affected
Foyer (between Science
& USP Block) 90% ceiling fell off
9 Staff Quarters 1 quarter (Principals) with 6 roofing sheets torn
3 quarters 30% Ceiling fell off with 30% louvres and
window damaged
all cutter systems destroyed
9 water pump shed destroyed
LDS Middle
11 Sch 3 classroom buildings miinor just 30% cuttering removed
Taufa’ahau– 3 Classroom buildings minor few roofing sheets (10%) removed; few broken
Pilolevu louvres, 80 cuttering removed
12 college
5 Staff quarters major 4 completely demolished, 1 with roof removed
2 Dormitories 90% Boys dormitory roof blown off; 30% of girls
dormitory roof blown off
Girls’ kitchen (wooden) demolished
Hall damage 40% roof and 990% cuttering removed
13 Pangai 1 building Minor few broken louvres, 605 cuttering damaged



Ofamo’oni 1 building (4 crm) Minor all 3 partitioned destroyed, few windows broken,
14 90% cuttering damaged
Ofamo’oni 1 building Minor 10% roofing sheet torn, 40% ceiling fdamaged, 90%
15 cuttering damaged
Bathroom Major whole roof blown off
1 Water tank demolished crushed by fallen tree
Office equipment soaked by rain
16 St Joseph Industrial Art Building Major all roof blown offf
Office building Major 50% roof removed; all office euipment and
resources soaked
17 College
Science building block Major 90% roof removed, damaged chemicals; 60% louvres
broken, 90% cuttering removed
General Crm Building Major 95% roof removed, damaged office equipment and
(housing office) reading resources; 60% louvres broken, 90%
cuttering removed
4 Staff Quarters
1 qtr Minor 1 quarter with minor damage -50% louvres broken
2 qtrs demolished 2 quarters completely demolished