“I would like to update you on preparations for Tropical Storm/Hurricane Danny, which we expect will arrive in Montserrat in the early hours of Monday 24 August.
A Tropical Storm Watch has been declared by the Antigua Weather Service. A TROPICAL STORM WATCH MEANS THAT TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS ARE POSSIBLE WITHIN THE WATCH AREA IN 48 HOURS No-one should take this storm lightly. It is unpredictable and has the potential to cause major damage if we are unprepared. I am continuing to chair a small Policy Group on a daily basis which includes the Honourable Premier, his Permanent Secretary, the Honourable Deputy Governor, the Director of Disaster Management, the Commissioner of Police and my UK Policy Adviser, to ensure that preparedness and communications are as thorough as they can be. This is in addition to meetings of the full National Disaster Preparedness and Response Advisory Committee (NDPRAC).
I am impressed with the level of commitment by, and co-operation among, Montserrat’s public and elected officials to ensure that the island is as prepared as it possibly can be for this storm, whatever its strength and duration. I am also impressed with the concern and attention paid to ensuring measures are taken to protect the most vulnerable in the community and to keep communications coming on what is happening with the storm, what to do to maximise your safety and security, and how to stay safe before, during and after the storm. Please listen to Radio ZJB for further advice and information.
The Policy Group will meet again tomorrow (Sunday) and authorise additional measures as necessary as the storm advances/approaches. Once a Hurricane Warning has been declared, you are asked to take full safety measures as outlined in
the residents’ guides to the hurricane season issued by the DMCA. Please stay indoors and follow those measures until the “All Clear” is communicated to you through the DMCA, hopefully either late on Monday or early on Tuesday. I crave the
indulgence of everyone in the community not to get in the way of the police, Public Works and other agencies in their work to get the island moving again.
The Policy Group and NDPRAC will continue to meet after the storm to assess any clean up issues and further actions. Let’s all keep in mind that there is still a need to be vigilant throughout the hurricane season which is scheduled to end on November 30. Even now, I understand there is another system with similar characteristics to Danny developing off the coast of West Africa which may be in our area by as early as this Thursday.
The Premier and I will be out and about today, checking on readiness in neighbourhoods and shelters. If you see us, please do come and chat.”
May all in Montserrat stay safe.