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ODPEM: Jamaicans be prepared
2012-08-03 13:00:18 | with audio | (0 Comments)
Monique Grange, Assistant News Editor
ODPEM director, Ronald Jackson - file photo.
The Gleaner/Power 106 News Centre
The Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM), is urging Jamaicans not to take the threat of Tropical Storm Ernesto lightly.
The Meteorological Office said on the forecast track Tropical Storm Ernesto is expected to be South East of Jamaica on Sunday morning and South West on Monday morning.
It said Ernesto could strengthen into a hurricane early Monday while located to the southwest of the island.
Heavy rains and isolated thunderstorms are also forecast for sections of the island today.
While acknowledging that weather conditions can change at anytime, Director General of ODPEM Ronald Jackson is advising the public to make the necessary arrangements to protect life and property should the country be impacted by the weather system.
Meanwhile, Jackson said contingency plans are in place for any eventuality, as the ODPEM continues to assess and monitor Tropical Storm Ernesto.
He said several persons in vulnerable communities across the island have also been trained as first responders in an emergency situation.
However, Jackson said special attention is being paid to the south of the island which is likely to be impacted by the weather system.
Jackson said a further response plan will also be discussed and developed at this afternoon’s meeting of the National Emergency Response Committee.
He said members of the Jamaica 50 Secretariat are also expected to attend the meeting in case it becomes necessary to scale down Independence celebrations as a result of poor weather conditions.
The meeting is scheduled for 5 p.m.
Meanwhile, the Met office said tropical Storm Ernesto has now entered the Caribbean Sea and could threaten marine interests throughout the region.
As a result, it said it may be necessary to issue an evacuation notice for marine areas later today or early tomorrow.
All fishers on the cays and banks are being advised to complete their preparations and be on the alert to evacuate at short notice.
Marine operators are also being urged not too venture far from the mainland.
Listen to Audio clip
Director General of ODPEM Ronald Jackson
Source: The Gleaner/Power 106 News
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