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Hurricane Season 2010: Tropical Storm Pat (Southern Pacific Ocean)
02.19.10
 
February 19, 2010

Tropical Cyclone Pat as it was about 200 miles from Raratonga on February 9. > View larger image
NASA’s Aqua satellite captured a visible image of Tropical Cyclone Pat as it was about 200 miles from Raratonga on February 9 at 23:53 UTC (6:53 p.m. ET).
Credit: NASA/JPL, Ed Olsen
Cook Islands Cleaning Up After Cyclone Pat

Tropical Cyclone Pat slammed into the Cook Islands during the week of February 8, and residents are still cleaning up. Although Pat caused a lot of damage, it didn't take any lives.

According to the New Zealand Herald, Pat damaged most homes and destroyed some completely on February 11, when it hit the island of Aitutaki. That island is located north of Rarotonga and Aruutunga, the capital is located on the island's the west side. There are about 2,000 people that live on the island.

Residents are still in temporary shelters, and are receiving relief. Meanwhile electricity and water supplies are in process of being restored.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center



February 9, 2010

Tropical Cyclone Pat as it was about 200 miles from Raratonga on February 9. > View larger image
NASA’s Aqua satellite captured a visible image of Tropical Cyclone Pat as it was about 200 miles from Raratonga on February 9 at 23:53 UTC (6:53 p.m. ET).
Credit: NASA/JPL, Ed Olsen
The Short and Strong Life of Tropical Cyclone Pat

During the week of February 8, Tropical Cyclone Pat formed in the South Pacific and brought storm warnings to the Southern Cook Islands. The Fiji Islands also monitored Pat and referenced the storm as "09F."

Pat formed between Samoa and northern Cook Islands, south of the Manihiki Atoll in the northern Cook Islands on February 8 at (0100 UTC), or February 7 at 7 p.m. ET.

NASA’s Aqua satellite captured a visible image of Tropical Cyclone Pat as it was about 200 miles from Raratonga on February 9 at 23:53 UTC (6:53 p.m. ET). The satellite image revealed a very compact storm.

On Tuesday, February 9 at 4 a.m. ET (0900 UTC), Pat had maximum sustained winds near 90 knots (103 mph/166 kph) and was located about 195 miles north of Rarotonga, near 18.0 South and 159.4 West. At that time, Pat was moving south-southwest near 9 mph (8 knots). During the time that Pat was at cyclone or hurricane-force, those strongest winds only extended as far as 15 miles out from Pat’s center.

Warnings were posted in Southern Cook Islands as Pat neared last week. A tropical cyclone hurricane warning was in force for Aitutaki and surrounding smaller islands on February 9, as passed near Aitutaki. A tropical cyclone Gale warning was also in force for Rarotonga, Palmerston and Mauke, and a tropical cyclone alert was in force for the remainder of the island group.

Pat strengthened further and peaked near 115 mph (100 knots/185 km/hr) on February 9 before moving southwesterly and weakening.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center