A New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) C-130 Hercules arrived in Fiji early this morning to deliver 12 tonnes of supplies including food, water and tarpaulins for communities devastated by Tropical Cyclone Winston.

"We have brought emergency supplies including tool kits, generators, water and water containers, ration packs and chainsaws for families affected by the cyclone," said Air Commodore Kevin McEvoy, the acting commander Joint Forces New Zealand.

"An inter-agency joint reconnaissance team that includes NZDF personnel are now on the ground assisting the government of Fiji in assessing the impact of the cyclone and the needs in affected communities. We stand ready to provide further assistance if required."

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Tropical Cyclone Winston battered Fiji last weekend and left a trail of destruction, particularly in the northern outlying islands. Water, power and communication outages are expected to continue for several days. Flooding in coastal areas is not forecast to subside for 2-3 days. Many people also remain in emergency shelters.

Mr McEvoy said a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 Orion aircraft flew over Fiji's northern outlying islands in the past two days.

Auckland Mayor Len Brown has also announced a Mayoral Fund to provide relief for those affected by the cyclone.

He said the appeal would run alongside local Pacific communities and aid agencies to best help people in Fiji and Tonga.

"Our thoughts are with everyone affected by Cyclone Winston, and particularly the people of Fiji who have sustained loss of life and widespread damage.

"The community in Auckland is already mobilising to help those in need, and the Mayoral Fund will assist in this," he said.

The mayoral fund committee would also provide containers for donated goods to go to the islands.

People can make a donation:

• Via the "donate now" function on the ACF website www.aucklandcf.org.nz

• Via direct payment to the ACF bank account (with reference "MFP" to ASB account 12-3028-0714703-00)

• Via cheque made payable to "Auckland Communities Foundation Mayoral Fund for the Pacific" and sent to PO Box 26087, Epsom 1334