On Saturday February 20 2016, 06:30 GMT category-5 Tropical Cyclone (TC) Winston struck the Pacific island of Fiji bringing winds of over 320km/h and torrential rain.
The cyclone was estimated to be one of the most severe to hit the South Pacific. The Government of Fiji estimated that almost 350,000 people living in the cyclone’s path were affected. Thousands of homes were destroyed and entire villages were impacted.
The Government of Fiji is leading the response to TC Winston. The Fiji National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) is coordinating efforts and activated the National and Divisional Emergency Operations Centres (EOCs). A 30 day state of natural disaster was declared by the Government directly after the cyclone. National clusters led by the Government are working in cooperation with international partners to address needs. On 21 March 2016, the the Government of Fiji extended the official disaster period for another 30 days ending on 19 April 2016.
The Emergency Telecommunications Cluster (ETC) was activated on15 March with the World Food Programme (WFP) as lead agency, working in close collaboration with the Government of Fiji.