Over 50 people take shelter in hurricane centres
The Ministry of Education has been forced to discard some schools which would have been chosen initially to be shelters for persons hoping to protect themselves from Tropical Storm Dorian.
Minister of Public Information and Broadcasting, Lucille Moe, in a brief statement to the press moments ago at the headquarters of the Department of Emergency Management (DEM), revealed problems were discovered during a check as some people decided to leave their homes and take up lodging at some shelters.
“One or two of the shelters had issues that would have made it difficult for them to have been used as a Category 1 location. We discarded two of them and added several others as we thought it would be needed,” Moe told reporters at the DEM’s office in Warrens, St Michael.
Chief Education Officer and Chief Shelter Warden, Karen Best, explained that a decision was also made regarding some schools, which would have been still in the process of undergoing remedial repairs in preparation for the start of the next school semester in two weeks’ time.
“We did make our checks to ascertain the readiness of the shelters, and there were some that we had to make some decisions on because of the summer works programme,” Best said. “Some of the schools were not available. We had issues with the Coleridge and Parry School with shuttering and glass windows. We made a decision not to use that school,” Best noted.
Best said Barbadians had taken the warnings about the strengthening of Tropical Storm Dorian seriously, as 53 persons have already taken refuge. “We’ve never had that number. It was all because of the seriousness of the Prime Minister and the approach. We are looking at a system that is going to pass very close to Barbados.”
The veteran educator said that during previous storms, numbers were usually less than ten, or in many cases none. “We are watching this. We have checked and everything is set up at the shelters,” Best concluded. (BA)