Damage assessments begin as Samoa storms ease

Severe weather that has caused flooding and forced schools to close in both Samoa and American Samoa is easing.

The Samoa Meteorological Service said the tropical depression that brought torrential rain and strong winds since Sunday is now moving away.

Schools remain closed in both Samoas on Wednesday (Tuesday in American Samoa) as damage assessments are carried out.

In American Samoa, airports remain shut and authorities are rushing to restore power on the main island, Tutuila.

The government has chartered a ship to carry supplies to the outlying Manu'a islands, which are reported to have been severely affected.