Tropical Cyclone Gita February 2018

| Cyclone

Fiji, Samoa, Tonga
| Pacific

Overview of the situation

Tropical Cyclone Gita passed by Samoa on 10 February 2018, Niue on 11 February 2018, Tonga on 12 February and Fiji on February 13, as a destructive Category 4 storm. It caused extensive flooding in low lying, coastal and river areas around Savai’I and Upolu. There was widespread flooding especially in the Vaisigano catchment area. 

Pacific Humanitarian Team professionals are supporting Government and partners in responding to the immediate health, shelter and water and sanitation needs of affected communities in Tonga. Essential supplies are being sent to support children to return to school and dignity kits for displaced persons. Assistance to support early recovery and education response is now being deployed.

As of 23 February, 205 families are still in evacuation centers as a result of Tropical Cyclone Gita. The number of evacuation centres has decreased from 96 at the height of the disaster to 46, with 41 in Tongatapu and five in Eua. Humanitarian partners continue to support the Government-led response through the National Emergency Management Office (NEMO), line Ministries and national clusters. Following TC Gita, more than 1,900 houses and 85 schools have been damaged. There has also been a significant impact on agriculture, with 80 per cent of fruit trees and 50 per cent of root crops damaged.

Key Figures

Government, humanitarian and private sector actors are coordinating action on the ground to provide support and deliver aid to the people in need. In Tonga, which is the most affected island after Cyclone Gita, here are the reported damage. 


Number of people displaced


Damaged homes


Homes without power


Last updated: 30 May - 02:32 from ReliefWeb

Text version

Humanitarian relief supplies

  • 7 Australian Defence Force (ADF) C-17 Globemaster flights transported humanitarian relief supplies and technical teams
  • 135 tonnes of humanitarian supplies were provided
  • Emergency shelter tool kits were provided for over 2000 families

Technical teams

  • A medical specialist was deployed to conduct a health assessment
  • 4 Disaster Assistant Response Team members were deployed to conduct structural assessments of damaged public buildings
  • 6 DFAT crisis response experts were deployed to support implementation of Australia’s response

Protection services

  • 2 tents were provided to serve as women friendly spaces
  • Solar lights were provided to over 2000 families

Wash and health support

  • 1000 dengue test kits were provided to Tonga Health
  • Supplies to assist the sexual and reproductive health and safety of more than 2000 women
  • 200 clean birthing kits were provided to the community

Early recovery

  • 5 large generators to provide emergency electricity to village health clinics and up to 1000 homes
  • Early recovery support through civil society partners and the Red Cross Movement
  • 20 electrical line mechanics working with Tonga Power Limited to restore electricity across Tongatapu
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Situation report

Last updated: 21 Sep - 08:38 from ReliefWeb

21st September 2018 A one-day workshop on TC Gita Emergency Preparedness and Response after Action Review was opened this morning at Tanoa International Dateline Hotel seeking to capture stakeholders’ perspectives on Disaster Risk Management arrangements regarding preparedness, warning, response and early recovery efforts from the cyclone.

The training is facilitated by the UNDP and organized by MEIDECC’s National Emergency Management Office.

CEO for MEIDECC Mr. Paula Ma’u said, “It is with anticipation to highlight and synthesize lessons learned that would help strengthen the function, performance and efficiency of Tonga’s preparedness and timely response recovery efforts from disasters.”

He noted that TC Gita was the first time for Tonga to use the cluster system in response to any natural disasters.

“I am confident that this event will provide an opportunity to share our experiences and how we can institutionalize these lessons into strong and resilient national planning processes in our respective ministries and agencies.”

Facilitator of the workshop from UNDP Dr. Bapon Fakhruddin noted that Tonga is very vulnerable to natural disaster and TC Gita was a very complex disaster.

He emphasized that saving lives is the fundamental goals for each of the clusters and that will be achieved through collaboration.

“We need to prepare ourselves on how we can response and fully recover after a disaster.”

Upon the completion of this workshop participants are expected to come up with a work plan where they can be able to monitor and evaluate the activities carried out during TC Gita as well as recommendations to close the gaps and form up a proper plan for the next natural disaster event.

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