The tiny Pacific Island nation of Tonga, which juts out into the South Pacific, southwest of American Samoa, was struck on Sunday night eastern time by the strongest storm of 2018 so far: Category 4 Cyclone Gita.

Tropical Cyclone Gita, packing sustained winds of 145 miles per hour, making it the equivalent of a Category 4 storm on the Saffir-Simpson Scale, swept across the southernmost Tongalese islands on Sunday night and Monday eastern time.

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