Fairfax Media Network

Weather News

Cyclone Freda weakening near New Caledonia

Tuesday January 1, 2013 - 22:16 EDT

Tropical Cyclone Freda is located off northern New Caledonia, moving south-southeast at about 10 kilometres an hour.

The category two storm is generating sustained winds at the centre of around 110 kilometres an hour.

The Tropical Cyclone Warning Centre at the Fiji Met Service says the cyclone is expected to weaken further as it moves parallel along New Caledonia's west coast over the next few days.

Cyclone Freda hit the most southern parts of Solomon Islands over the weekend.

The duty forecaster at the weather office in Fiji, Shalwin Singh, told Radio Australia's that Freda could still bring very bad weather to New Caledonia.

"They will experience experience damaging gale force winds or stronger possibly for the next three days because the cyclone is moving really slow," he said.

"On the 3rd of January we expect it to lie to the west of New Caledonia. So it will affect New Caledonia for the coming few days."

On Monday Rajneel Prasad from the Tropical Cyclone Warning Centre in Nadi said Cyclone Freda could generate a storm surge as it moves south and affect low-lying areas, especially the small islands in New Caledonia.

Mr Prasad told Pacific Beat although the Freda is expected to weaken as it approaches the French Pacific territory, the storm's "intensity and strength" should not be underestimated.

Freda moved across the southern Solomons on Saturday, bringing heavy rains and winds up to 130 kilometres an hour.

Witnesses say the cyclone tore roofs off houses and flattened trees.

The director of the National Disaster Management Office, Loti Yates, says thousands of people from riverside villages moved to higher ground.

There were no reports of injury.


- ABC

© ABC 2013

More breaking news

ABC News
Sydney Morning Herald
National Nine News
News Limited

Display Your Local Weather

Weather News

Rain flows off Uluru after burst of wet weather in Central Australia

15:21 EST

Rain has been filmed streaming down Uluru after another burst of wet weather in what has proved to be a damp year for Central Australia.

Flooding to end Victoria's wet winter

13:09 EST

A band of rain sweeping over Victoria may cause flooding in the state's north and northeast in the next 24 hours.

Wet winter almost over for Tasmania

11:25 EST

Parts of northern Tasmania are having one of the wettest winters on record, but it isn't over yet.