International

Impact of tsunami being assessed in Tonga

An eruption occurs at the underwater volcano Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha'apai off Tonga.

An eruption occurs at the underwater volcano Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha'apai off Tonga.

Australia and New Zealand sent surveillance flights on Monday to assess damage in Tonga , isolated from the rest of the world after the eruption of a volcano that triggered a tsunami and blanketed the Pacific island with ash.

Australia’s Minister for the Pacific Zed Seselja said initial reports suggested no mass casualties from Saturday’s eruption and tsunami but Australian police had visited beaches and reported significant damage with “houses thrown around”.

Watch | Tonga's Underwater Volcano Erupts

One British woman was reported missing, he said.

Tonga’s deputy head of mission in Australia, Curtis Tu’ihalangingie, asked for patience as Tonga’s government decides its priorities for aid. Tonga is concerned about the risk of aid deliveries spreading COVID-19 to the island, which is COVID-free.

“We don’t want to bring in another wave - a tsunami of COVID-19,” he said.

Also read: Shockwave from Tonga volcanic eruption recorded in Chennai

Telephone networks in Tonga have been restored but ash was posing a major health concern, contaminating drinking water.

“Most people are not aware the ash is toxic and bad for them,” Mr. Tu’ihalangingie said.


Our code of editorial values

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | May 24, 2022 2:06:43 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/impact-of-tsunami-being-assessed-in-tonga/article38284105.ece