Tuesday 26 September, 2017

Hurricane Irma Approaches the Northern Leeward Islands

According to the Saint Lucia Meteorological Service, as at 11:00 am on Monday September 04, 2017, the eye of Hurricane Irma was located near latitude 16.8 north, longitude 53.3 west or about 560 miles or 905 kilometres east of the Leeward Islands. Irma is moving toward the west-southwest near 14 mph or 22 km/h but a turn toward the west is forecast later today.

Irma is a category 3 hurricane with maximum sustained winds near 120 mph or 195 km/h, with higher gusts and some additional strengthening is forecast through Tuesday night. On the projected track, the center of Hurricane Irma is expected to move near or over portions of the northern Leeward Islands around Tuesday night to early Wednesday. Consequently, hurricane warnings and watches have been issued for most of those islands. A tropical storm Watch is also in effect for Dominica.

For Saint Lucia, the National Emergency Management Organization wishes to draw particular attention to the marine forecast as issued by the Saint Lucia Meteorological Service and to urge small craft operators and sea bathers to adhere to the advice given in light of expected rough seas.

NEMO also wishes to remind the public that preparedness actions ought not to focus specifically on particular imminent or forthcoming events but rather persons should maintain a constant state of preparedness for all hazards to which Saint Lucia is vulnerable.

Here are a few tips to help you:

1)Prepare an emergency plan and discuss this plan with your family and employees.
2)Develop an Emergency Communication Plan – Determine a strategy with your family as to how you will contact each other in the event of separation from one another during a disaster.
3)Have a Survival/Emergency Kit.
4)Know the location of your emergency shelter and determine the best routes to reach that shelter.
5)Check into your home and auto insurance policies – Confirm that policies are valid and that coverage is appropriate.
6)Make arrangements for pets and livestock

For additional information, please contact NEMO via telephone number (758) 452-3802/(758) 468-2126 or email at admin@nemo.gov.lc. You may also visit our website at www.nemo.gov.lc