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Samoa prepares for Cyclone Amos

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 23/04/2016

Samoa is bracing for the impact of Tropical Cyclone Amos, predicted to potentially be the strongest cyclone to hit the Pacific nation in a decade.

New Zealand's MetService said on Saturday the cyclone was about 260km northwest of Savai'i Island at midday on Saturday New Zealand time.

It's currently a category three cyclone but is intensifying while it tracks southeastwards towards Samoa, "affecting them during Sunday".

Weather.com says it may be the strongest tropical cyclone to hit the islands in a decade.

Businesses in Apia are putting sandbags in place and lifting goods to high ground to protect against flooding, the Samoa Observer reports.

Air New Zealand says it has a flight from Auckland to Apia at 3.30pm on Sunday. The flight is currently operating as scheduled but the situation is being monitored.

In the 2013 census 144,138 people or 3.6 per cent of those living in New Zealand identified as Samoan and two-thirds of them lived in Auckland.

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