Friday, October 28, 2005 

Hurricane Sandra's center passed about 570 miles (915 kilometers) east-southeast of the islands early yesterday morning

A Space Agency satellite took these photos of Hurricane Sandra early yesterday morning as the storm's center passed about 490 miles (815 kilometers) southeast of the UN Heard & McDonald Islands. The satellite uses radar to peer through a hurricane's clouds and measure the roughness of the ocean beneath it. This is how scientists estimate the wind speed of the storm at various points.

Picture 1 - cloud cover over the islands Thursday 1720
Picture 2 - radar-imaging view through the cloud cover Thursday 1738
Most of the islands' infrastructure is located on Heard Island, the largest in the archipelago. Buildings known to have sustained damage include the McDonald Institute, the brewery, and several tourist facilities. The tourist season has not yet started, and no serious injuries are recorded among the permanent residents. Radio communication with Flat Island was lost, but the meditation centre is on the lee side of the island, and is thought to have escaped the full force of the storm. Hurricane Sandra is expected to slam into Amsterdam Island early Sunday morning. Copyright 2005. All rights reserved. This material may not be republished, rebroadcast, rewritten, or deconstructed.