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Severe storms cause American Samoa to declare state of emergency

A state of emergency has been declared by American Samoa’s Governor, Lemanu Peleti Mauga after a series of homes, the school and the church on Aunu’u island were flooded by storms, said Asia Pacific Report.

American Samoa, located in the South Pacific Ocean, is United States territory inhabited mostly by Pacific Islanders. The island is surrounded by rainforests, beaches and reefs.

Due to the storm, several sections of the road are not accessible on the eastern side of the island. The village of Fatumafuti was covered with sand and debris while huge waves crashed onto vehicles, making them stall.

Residents living in villages on the east side said this is the worst they have seen as far as waves crashing into roads.

From the eastern to the western ends of the island, huge rocks, debris and garbage were dumped all over the roads and beaches.

Bulldozers attempted to clear the highway with Utulei Beach being cluttered with plastic bottles, wrappings and rocks.

According to 1 News, Pago Pago International Airport has temporarily closed as the heavy rain damaged the runway and all government offices remain closed.

As the storms continue on, the Emergency Operations Centre was activated in American Samoa and Lemanu said he appreciated everyone’s cooperation. He asked the residents on the island to stay vigilant and keep their families safe.

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