News

Local likens Samoan cyclone damage to ‘a war zone’

DIRECT HIT: Some of the damage in Samoa after Cyclone Evan struck last month.
DIRECT HIT: Some of the damage in Samoa after Cyclone Evan struck last month.

LENNOX Head's George Leslie says Australia has not done enough to support its South Pacific neighbour Samoa, after the country was devastated by a cyclone last month.

Mr Leslie is a keen surfer who has invested a lot of time, effort and money into Samoa.

In 1999 he and his business partners built a resort there, the Sa'Moana Resort.

But it has been torn to shreds by Cyclone Evan, which hit the island on December 13 with heavy rain, winds of up to 270km/h and storm surges up to four metres high.

"My daughter Kirstin and her husband Daniel (Mendola) are running the resort," Mr Leslie said.

"We first heard about the cyclone the next morning, but it was so hard because we couldn't get any up-to-date information on what was happening over there.

"We had a garbled message from Kirstin on our phone, saying the place was a mess.

"They had very little warning about it.

"But then the cyclone hit and it was so full on.

"There are bungalows turned upside down and the roof of the main building has been torn off.

"Trees are down everywhere and there's still no water or electricity and it could be another two months before that gets reconnected.

"All the furniture is ruined.

"There are kayaks all over the place.

"Our boats were smashed up against the rocks.

"The problem is that in Samoa there are no organisations like the State Emergency Service or the Rural Fire Service. They don't even have councils.

"So getting access to help for the clean-up has been really difficult.

"It's like a war zone there at the moment.

 

The Australian Red Cross has launched the Cyclone Evan 2012 Appeal. You can donate by calling 1800 811 700, or by sending a cheque or money order with a note that it is for the Cyclone Evan (Samoa and Fiji) 2012 Appeal to: Australian Red Cross Supporter Service, PO Box 2957, Melbourne VIC 8060.

Topics:  lennox head, samoa



Migaloo mayhem: Boaties, drone operators told to back off

A Sea World Cruise charter vessel near Migaloo yesterday, off the Tweed Coast.

Video: Helicopters, charter boats, drones and research vessels out in force to...

Organisers postpone new country music festival

Australian music megastar Kasey Chambers will be playing at the Sawtell RSL on Friday.

Mur'bah's Country Roots Festival cancelled

Council's $200k woes: what cops are doing about it

NSW police at coffs harbour boat ramp, arrest , gun, shots, handcuffs

Photo: Trevor Veale / The Coffs Coast Advocate

Thieves consider Tweed Council to be a "soft target"

Latest deals and offers

The Bachelor wash up: bacon, plank offs and that white rose

Richie Strahan, second from left, with bachelorettes Eliza, Faith, Noni and Janey in a scene from episode one of the fourth season of The Bachelor.

RICHIE Strahan meets some beautiful, and colourful, bachelorettes.

The Bachelor: Vinteaea tells why she had to walk out

Vintaea Carlos was one of 22 "bachelorettes" looking for love on the fourth season of The Bachelor.

Queensland beauty leaves Richie at rose ceremony.

Amber Heard claims Johnny Depp is stalling divorce

Amber Heard claims Johnny Depp is delaying their divorce

MasterChef winner cheered on by family in Grafton

BIG CHEER: Carlie Slattery (top right) with her husband Madison and kids Ashton, Eva and baby Milla celebrate Carlie's cousin Elena's win in MasterChef last night.

Carlie gets behind her cousin's MasterChef win

Organisers postpone new country music festival

Australian music megastar Kasey Chambers will be playing at the Sawtell RSL on Friday.

Mur'bah's Country Roots Festival cancelled

You can own this Queensland town for just $1

Yelarbon

Unprecedented auction of town's business centre with no reserve

Work starts on $15M Caloundra apartment building

Turning the first sod at the Aqua View Apartments site in Kings Beach are (from left) husband-and-wife developers Alex Yuan and Stella Sun with construction company Tomkins director Mike Tomkins and Councillor Tim Dwyer.

Developers excited about addition to Kings Beach skyline

Plans revealed for 1500-lot 'master-planned community'

Precinct will be bounded by Boundary St and Shoesmith Rd

Ecco Ripley sales run sparks prime release

MOVING IN: Sekisui House has announced the release of more residential blocks at Ecco Ripley.

Sekisui House is preparing to unveil more land at Ecco Ripley

Massive residential 9-storey high-rise hit by delays

An artist’s impression of the eight-storey-high apartment complex that Bernoth Holdings wants to build in South Toowoomba, next to the City Golf Club.

Developer struggles to get approved high-rise development started