Cyclone Lusi

Cyclone Lusi was the second severe tropical cyclone of the 2013–14 season and affected Fiji, Vanuatu and New Zealand.

Severe Tropical Cyclone Lusi
Category 3 severe tropical cyclone (Aus scale)
Category 1 tropical cyclone (SSHWS)
Lusi Mar 12 2014 2225UTC.jpg
Cyclone Lusi on March 12, 2014
Formed7 March 2014
Dissipated17 March 2014
(Extratropical after 14 March 2014)
Highest winds10-minute sustained: 150 km/h (90 mph)
1-minute sustained: 130 km/h (80 mph)
Lowest pressure960 hPa (mbar); 28.35 inHg
Fatalities10[1]
Damage$3 million (2014 USD)
(New Zealand only)
Areas affectedVanuatu, Fiji, New Zealand
Part of the 2013–14 South Pacific cyclone season

The system that was to become Cyclone Lusi was first noted as a tropical disturbance on 7 March, while it was located to the east of Fiji. Over the next three days the system moved towards the north-northeast and gradually developed further, before it was named Lusi, late on 9 March, after it had developed into a tropical cyclone. The system dissipated on 17 March.

Meteorological historyEdit

 
Map plotting the storm's track and intensity, according to the Saffir–Simpson scale
Map key
  Tropical depression (≤38 mph, ≤62 km/h)
  Tropical storm (39–73 mph, 63–118 km/h)
  Category 1 (74–95 mph, 119–153 km/h)
  Category 2 (96–110 mph, 154–177 km/h)
  Category 3 (111–129 mph, 178–208 km/h)
  Category 4 (130–156 mph, 209–251 km/h)
  Category 5 (≥157 mph, ≥252 km/h)
  Unknown
Storm type
  Extratropical cyclone / Remnant low / Tropical disturbance / Monsoon depression

Early on 7 March 2014, the Fiji Meteorological Service reported that Tropical Disturbance 18F had developed about 685 km (425 mi) to the west of Nadi.[2][3] The system was located within a marginally favourable environment for further development, which included low to moderate vertical wind shear and favourable sea surface temperatures.[2][3][4] Over the next two days the system moved towards the north-northwest and slowly consolidated, as atmospheric convection wrapped into the system's low level circulation centre, before RSMC Nadi reported during 9 March that the system had developed into a tropical depression.[4][5] During that day the system further consolidated as it affected Vanuatu and moved towards the north-northeast, before the United States Joint Typhoon Warning Center initiated warnings and designated the depression as Tropical Cyclone 18P later that day.[6] RSMC Nadi subsequently named the system Lusi at around 23:00 UTC (11:00 FST), after it had developed into a category 1 tropical cyclone on the Australian tropical cyclone intensity scale.[7][8]

Preparations and impactEdit

VanuatuEdit

Late on 9 March, ahead of the depression being classified as a tropical cyclone and named Lusi, the Vanuatu Meteorology and Geo-Hazards Department issued tropical cyclone warnings for the Vanuatu provinces of Torba, Sanma, Penama and Malampa.[9][10]

The cyclone killed 10 people and impacted as many as 20,000 people, especially in Torba, Sanma, Penama, Malampa and Shefa Provinces. Many low-lying areas were flooded and more than 40 structures were damaged or destroyed. All provinces of the country reported damage to agriculture.[1]

FijiEdit

On 11 March, a tropical cyclone alert was issued for parts of the Western Division, as Lusi approached the islands from the west.[11] During the next day gale warnings were issued for the Western Division before they were cancelled later that day, as the system turned towards the south sooner than had been expected.[12][13][14] As a result, Fiji was spared any direct effects from the cyclone, while the associated trough of low pressure affected the islands until 13 March.[15]

New ZealandEdit

During 9 March, MetService started to warn that a tropical weather system might affect New Zealand by the end of that week.[16][17]

Cyclone Lusi hit New Zealand shores on 13 March. In preparation for the event the New Zealand government advised people to fix loosened things (such as trampolines), and the Civil Defense team was put on alert. Winds reaching up to 130 km/h were expected to occur in the cities of Auckland, Whangarei and Hamilton, and the east coast of the North Island was put on high alert. Lusi brought severe winds as it moved southeast towards Wellington and the northern South Island in the evening of 15 March. On 16 March, the severe gale winds slightly weakened, and Lusi pushed away from New Zealand on 17 March.

Insured losses across the country amounted to NZ$4 million (US$3 million).[18]

RetirementEdit

Due to the impacts caused by the storm, the name Lusi was retired and was later replaced by 'Louise'.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Asia Pacific Region: Weekly Regional Humanitarian Snapshot (11 - 17 March 2014) - Vanuatu".
  2. ^ a b RSMC Nadi – Tropical Cyclone Centre (7 March 2014). "Tropical Disturbance Summary March 7, 2014 09z". Fiji Meteorological Service. Archived from the original on 10 March 2014. Retrieved 10 October 2015.
  3. ^ a b Joint Typhoon Warning Center (7 March 2014). "Significant Tropical Weather Outlook for the Western and South Pacific Ocean March 7, 2014 06z". United States Navy, United States Airforce. Archived from the original on 13 March 2014. Retrieved 14 March 2014.
  4. ^ a b Joint Typhoon Warning Center (9 March 2014). "Significant Tropical Weather Outlook for the Western and South Pacific Ocean March 9, 2014 03z". United States Navy, United States Airforce. Archived from the original on 14 March 2014. Retrieved 14 March 2014.
  5. ^ RSMC Nadi – Tropical Cyclone Centre (9 March 2014). "Tropical Disturbance Advisory March 9, 2014 06z". Fiji Meteorological Service. Archived from the original on 10 March 2014. Retrieved 9 March 2014.
  6. ^ Joint Typhoon Warning Center (9 March 2014). "Tropical Cyclone 18P Warning 1 March 9, 2014 21z". United States Navy, United States Air Force. Archived from the original on 10 March 2014. Retrieved 14 March 2014.
  7. ^ RSMC Nadi – Tropical Cyclone Centre (10 March 2014). "Tropical Disturbance Advisory March 10, 2014 00z". Fiji Meteorological Service. Archived from the original on 10 March 2014. Retrieved 16 March 2014.
  8. ^ "Tropical Cyclone (TC) Lusi" (PDF) (Media Release). Fiji Meteorological Service. 10 March 2014. Archived from the original (PDF) on 16 March 2014. Retrieved 16 March 2014.
  9. ^ "Tropical Cyclone Warning Number 1 for Torba, Sanma, Penama and Malampa Provinces". Vanuatu Meteorology and Geo-Hazards Department. 10 March 2014. Archived from the original on 11 March 2014. Retrieved 15 March 2014.
  10. ^ "Tropical Cyclone Warning Number 2 for Torba, Sanma, Penama and Malampa Provinces". Vanuatu Meteorology and Geo-Hazards Department. 10 March 2014. Archived from the original on 11 March 2014. Retrieved 15 March 2014.
  11. ^ RSMC Nadi – Tropical Cyclone Centre (11 March 2014). "Special Weather Bulletin Number 1 for Fiji on Tropical Cyclone Lusi, March 11, 2014 00z". Fiji Meteorological Service. Archived from the original on 11 March 2014. Retrieved 26 July 2014.
  12. ^ RSMC Nadi – Tropical Cyclone Centre (12 March 2014). "Special Weather Bulletin Number 5 for Fiji on Tropical Cyclone Lusi, March 12, 2014 00z". Fiji Meteorological Service. Archived from the original on 12 March 2014. Retrieved 26 July 2014.
  13. ^ RSMC Nadi – Tropical Cyclone Centre (12 March 2014). "Special Weather Bulletin Number 12 for Fiji on Tropical Cyclone Lusi, March 12, 2014 21z". Fiji Meteorological Service. Archived from the original on 13 March 2014. Retrieved 26 July 2014.
  14. ^ "Fiji escapes effects of Cyclone Lusi as system turns south". Radio New Zealand. 13 March 2014. Archived from the original on 16 March 2014.
  15. ^ Climate Services Division (9 April 2014). Fiji Climate Summary: January 2013 Volume 35: Issue 3 (PDF) (Report). Fiji Meteorological Service. Archived from the original (PDF) on 10 August 2014. Retrieved 26 July 2014.
  16. ^ "Keeping an eye on the tropics" (MetService News Release). Meteorological Service of New Zealand Limited. 10 March 2014. Retrieved 17 March 2014.
  17. ^ "Cyclone Lusi retreating to open waters". Meteorological Service of New Zealand Limited. 17 March 2014. Archived from the original on 17 March 2014. Retrieved 17 March 2014.
  18. ^ "Half Year 2014 Insured Storm Damage Bill Nears $77 Million". Insurance Council of New Zealand. 9 July 2014. Retrieved 25 April 2015.

External linksEdit