Thomas:Prepare for busy hurricane season

CAROL MARTINDALE, carolmartindale@nationnews.com

Added 09 May 2013

judythomas1

While an active season is being predicted for the 2013 Hurricane Season, Director of the Department of Emergency Management (DEM) Judy Thomas is urging Barbadians to prepare their homes and businesses against flooding and strong winds. Speaking to the media today Thomas said Barbados “was comfortable up to a Category one hurricane”, noting that anything over or above would cause tremendous stress on the island’s system and “we are nowhere ready for a Category three or four”. According to Acting Deputy Director of the Barbados Meteorological Services Sonia Nurse, who was also present at the meeting, the first forecast issued for this year’s hurricane season, stated that it was going to be an above normal season, with an expectation of 18 main systems, nine of which would become hurricanes and four espected to become major hurricanes. Nurse explained that the forecast would be updated on June 3, and the numbers might change. Meanwhile, Thomas stressed that it was important for Barbadians to prepare their families, homes and businesses for the risks associated with hurricanes and tropical storms. “Our vulnerability is so high for a category one that we need to seriously to stress the importance of our disaster risk reduction national programme to reduce our vulnerability to tropical storms or hurricanes,” she said. Thomas noted that hurricane preparedness was a shared responsibility between DEM, the public, media and other stakeholders. (AH)

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