AFAP manages the Australian-Pacific Centre for Emergency and Disaster Information (APCEDI) to provide news on natural disaster events in the Asia-Pacific region and to help with rapid disaster response assessment. This was originally a communications network that was activated during a disaster to disseminate information to our Asia-Pacific NGO offices. Now APCEDI has a much wider application across the Asia-Pacific Region.

Tuesday, February 24, 2004

APCEDI Alert 13P, Cyclone Ivy #5, 2004

Dear Colleagues

Alert 5, Cyclone Ivy 13P / 24 February 2004, Sydney 08:00 EDT

Cyclone Ivy has slowly strengthened and become better organised overnight. It is now a minimal Category 1 Cyclone although it still does not have very defined centre but instead a large elongated area of central convection. This large central convection area is located 150 km east of the Banks Island moving slowly west at 5 kts.

The western part of the central convection area has moved over the islands around Vanua Lava in the Northern Banks Islands. The northwestern part of the central convection area continues to cover Anuta and Tikopia and is just moving over Vanikolo in the main Santa Cruz Group of the Solomons. Therefore the APCEDI Alerts will now be extended to the rest of the Santa Cruz Group of the Solomons.

Most predictive models are showing an imminent southern shift in the storm’s track, and that may now be happening. The official track out of the Nadi Met Office has the storm moving over Maewo, Ambae and Santo although at least one models still show the track over Efate. Although without a southern component soon, it looks like the main impact will be in Northern Vanuatu and Eastern Solomons.

Given that Ivy is a minimal Category 1 storm, heavy rains and gale-force winds are currently being sustained in much of the Banks Islands of Northern Vanuatu and Vanikolo, Anuta and Tikopia in Eastern Solomons with intermittent heavy rains and gale-force winds over many other parts of Northern Vanuatu and Santa Cruz. Sustained heavy rains and gale-force winds should likely develop over remaining parts of the Banks Islands, Torres Islands, Maewo, Pentecost and Ambae in Vanuatu and over Utupua and Nenda in the Solomons in the next 6-12 hours.

Given the Category 1 nature of the storm damage to any areas should be minimal and localised and limited to low-land tidal flooding, and flash-flooding in hill areas. Some crop damage may occur. The fact the storm is moving slowly could result in heavy localised rainfall which could also result in localised flooding of flood prone areas. However, if a central eye wall manages to emerge later in the day, localised damage along its path could be more severe.

Authorities in Vanuatu from the Torres Islands to Efate (including Torres and Banks Islands, Pentecost, Ambae, Santo, Malakula, Ambrym, Paama, Ulveah, Epi, Shepherd Islands and Efate including all small islands in these areas) as well as all of the Santa Cruz Group in the Eastern Solomons should be on alert, monitor the path of the storm closely throughout the day and be taking immediate actions to protect people and property. People in mountain areas along the eastern and southern slopes of ranges should be on alert for heavy rain resulting in flash flooding. Low lying coastal areas especially along east and southern parts of large islands should also be on alert for tidal flooding.

Concerns in New Caledonia, the main islands of the Solomon Islands and the islands of Southern Vanuatu should continue to monitor this storm as it develops over the next few days. Feeder bands are already bringing rains and gusty winds to many of these areas, and this will likewise increase during the day.

APCEDI will continue monitoring the event. More detailed information about the storm can be found on

Kevin Vang
APCEDI Coordinator

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