The National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) has warned Honiara residents to go to higher grounds, stay indoors and stay put.

“This is a serious situation which could get worse if people are not careful...the message is simple, stay away from rivers, streams or flooded areas,” stated NDMO officers at the joint response unit.

“We have had to set up teams to get people to move away from vulnerable areas, there are spots in town that may collapse as the heavy rain continues.”

The NDMO states that people should stock up on necessary items, and only make the trip to town if it is absolutely necessary.

Those areas identified as vulnerable are the Chinatown area, but of particular concern are the Mataniko Bridge and Lungga Bridge.

Preliminary reports from the Ministry of Infrastructure and Development (MID) state that both bridges are no longer structurally sound.

Chief engineers spoken to state that they are monitoring the situation closely and may close off the two bridges should the situation worsens.

“For now our advise is not to put further stress on the structure, so we have advised the police to block off one is important that people use the bridge only if it is necessary...we are keeping it open because it is the only link from West Honiara to the hospital.”