• The drought has broken in the northern Cook Islands.

Forecasts indicated it could be weeks if not months before any significant rainfall and water levels on Tongareva, or Penrhyn, had become critical.

But the director of the country’s Met Service said rain bands formed by recent cyclone activity over Fiji have drifted across both the Northern and Southern Cooks.

Arona Ngari said passing showers are dropping above average rainfall but not enough to cause flash flooding.

He said tanks in the north are not yet full but more showers are forecast.

“Persistent occasional rain is coming through and is dropping the water at the ideal spots both in the north and the southern Cooks. Just enough to compensate the deficit of water that they’re containing in their tanks,” he said.

Ngari said the southern group’s Atiu, north-east of Rarotonga, received 129mm of rain over three hours last night.


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