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Double disaster as Solomon Islands hit by tropical storm and earthquake

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Double disaster as Solomon Islands hit by tropical storm and earthquake

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The Solomon Islands has been bit by an earthquake just as the Pacific Ocean archipelago was reeling from heavy flooding from a tropical storm.

So far at least 16 people have died and thousands left homeless as the capital Honiara suffered the worst flooding in living memory.

The full effect of the earthquake, reported to measure magnitude six, is not yet clear, though the death toll from the storm is expected to rise.

Save the Children’s Logistics Manager, Graham Kenna said: “A number of my staff have witnessed dead people and particularly children have been washed away by these flash floods.”

Rising waters have caused houses to collapse into rivers and roads to become blocked.

Sipuru Rove from the Solomon Islands National Disaster Management Office said: “We recorded around 10,000 people who have been relocated to campsites and evacuation centres.”

Electricity has reported to have been cut off in some areas. Relief workers are worried about outbreaks of diarrhoea and mosquito-borne viruses.