Cyclone danger lessening

Monday March 04, 2019 Written by Published in Weather

Cook Islands may have escaped the brunt of a cyclone this season after latest tropical storm Pola dissipated in waters outside of Tonga.


Meteorological Service director Arona Ngari said February was the active month for cyclones in the region and “looks like we may not have any more after this latest one”.

Tropical Cyclone Pola formed on February 23 from a tropical disturbance and intensified into a category four storm within a couple of days.

Ngari yesterday said TC Pola had now dissipated into an extra tropical depression and lost its intensity as a cyclone.

He said at the centre of the system it was carrying wind of 30 knots, adding the cyclone was losing strength.

As of yesterday, it was located far south of Tonga and taking a south easterly track which is away from the Cook Islands.

“If we look at the predictions made on the number of cyclones for the region, we may still have a couple more left but this seems unlikely,” Ngari said.

“February is the most active month for cyclones and I assume this (TC Pola) is the last one for this cyclone season.

“However the cyclone season officially doesn’t end until the last day of April and unless there is some activeness of a system, we might actually end up with a good year in terms of cyclones in the Pacific region.”

Cook Islands, especially the southern group, was expected to face two cyclones in the 2018/19 season which is from November, 2018 to April, 2019.

“The prediction for the Cook Islands was two cyclones and it didn’t happen (so far) but we had some close shave this season,” Ngari said.

Meanwhile a weak trough of low pressure lie slow moving over northern parts of southern Cook Islands which may result into some showers this weekend.

For Rarotonga, fine weather is predicted apart from brief showers.

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