New Guinea- Warnings of further severe sea swells causing tidal surges, similar to those experienced in December 2008, have been issued in Papua New Guinea. The warnings were targeted at the Momase and New Guinea Islands regions. Indications were that additional tidal surges could be experienced in the areas submerged in December, which destroyed crops and infrastructure. The waters south of New Britain Island and around Guam have risen by more than 20cm. Earlier reports stated that late December through January were the months for spring or “king” tides in PNG. “These tides would be in excess of 2.5m along the southern coast from the border of Indonesia and PNG to Milne Bay and the north coast and New Guinea Islands including Bougainville." On 31 December 2008, 38,000 people were still affected by flooding as a result of early December sea swells; 2,000 houses were destroyed or damaged in Manus, East Sepik, New Ireland and the Autonomous Region of Bougainville; and safe drinking water and adequate storage tanks and containers, as well as food and sanitation assistance, were still priority concerns for the affected population.
Image Above: Residents from around the Meni area in Wewak, East Sepik Province, watching the sea swells crashing against the Winjammer Beach Motel, which eventually collapsed
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