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Treacherous cyclone hitting Fiji islands

Breaking Storm News
Fiji Islands
Destructive Category 4 Super Storm
(CNN) -- Powerful Tropical Cyclone Daman closed in on Fiji on Friday, threatening the Pacific island chain with home-destroying winds and dangerous floods.

"It's most likely going to be one of the severest cyclones to hit the country in recent times," Fiji Disaster Management Office director Joeli Rokovabe told The Associated Press. Tourist resorts -- Fiji's top industry -- are also threatened, he added.

The population of the nation's 332 islands is about 900,000, according to the CIA World Factbook, and many residents rely on fishing and farming to survive.

A Category 4 storm, Daman has triggered a hurricane warning for some of Fiji's larger islands, including Cikobia and northeastern Vanua Levu. Daman's eye is expected to brush Vanua Levu, which is Fiji's second largest island, said meteorologist Alipate Waqaicelua.

Vanua Levu residents and those on the Lau and Lomaiviti island groups have been warned to move from coastal areas to cyclone shelters and other safe buildings, said Rokovabe, according to The Associated Press.

The storm is predicted to bring "winds of very destructive hurricane force" within 30 miles (48 kilometers) of its center, according to the Fiji Meteorological Service.


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