- Gov’t orders shutdown of all activities — public and private
- CWSA issues another bulletin about water supply
- Hours of work for nurses at MCMH on Wednesday revised
- Special advisory issued for residents of flood-prone and low-lying areas
- E.T. Joshua Airport closed until further notice
A tropical storm warning is now in effect for St. Vincent and the Grenadines, the National Emergency Management Organisation (NEMO), said around 12:20 Wednesday.
A tropical storm warning is an announcement that sustained winds of 34 to 63 knots (39 to 73 mph or 63 to 118 km/hr) are expected somewhere within the specified area within 36 hours in association with a tropical, subtropical, or post-tropical cyclone.
A release from the Meteorological Office states that a 11: a.m., the centre of tropical Storm Matthew was located near latitude 13.4 N 60.7 W or about 35 miles east northeast of St Vincent.
Tropical Storm Matthew is moving towards the west at 21mph.
“This westward motion with some decrease in forward speed is expected during the next 24- 48 hours. The maximum sustained winds are 60 mph and the minimum central pressure is 1008 millibars. St. Vincent and the Grenadines is expected to begin feeling the impacts of the storm by 1:30 p.m. today,” the Met Office said.
On the forecast track, the centre of Matthew will move through the Windward Islands during the next couple of hours, and move over the eastern Caribbean Sea through Friday.
Environmental conditions are conducive for some gradual strengthening over the next 12 – 24 hours.
Rainfall accumulations of 4 to 8 inches (100 to 200 millimeters) are possible with higher amounts likely in mountainous areas. In addition, sea swells of 3 to 4 meters (9 to 12 feet) are also likely.
Acting Prime Minister, Montgomery Daniel has also ordered a full shutdown of all activities –public service and business with immediate effect.
The National Emergency Operations Centre (NEOC) is fully activated. All emergency shelters are to remain open.
The E.T. Joshua Airport is closed until further notice.
Residents in flood-prone and low-lying areas are asked to take the necessary precautions as Tropical Storm Matthew can generate heavy rainfall and flooding, NEMO said.
The SVG Meteorological Services will continue to provide the necessary updates on Tropical Storm Matthew and the NEMO will continue to provide updates.
And, the Central Water and Sewerage Authority (CWSA) said on Wednesday that during the passes of the impending weather system, it may become necessary to shut down its water supply system.
“This means that there is every likelihood that consumers will be without water at some point during the course of today, Wednesday 28th September up until the weather system passes,” the CWSA said.
The utility company asked residents to ensure that they have adequate amounts of water stored at their homes during the passes of the weather system.
The CWSA said it will be monitoring the situation closely and will restore water as soon as conditions improve.
Meanwhile, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health, Luis de Shong, Wednesday afternoon said that all nurses who work at the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital and who are scheduled to work on the evening shift today are advised that they are to report for duty at 1 p.m. instead.
Additionally, all nurses who are scheduled to work on the night shift today are advised that they are to report for duty at 5 p.m. instead.
de Shong further advised that a consequence of the advisories issued by NEMO, district clinics are open today, FOR EMERGENCIES ONLY. Normal operations will resume tomorrow, Thursday.
Outpatient services and elective surgeries at the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital will resume on Thursday, Sept. 29.
He said that persons are reminded that they should continue to secure their medication in a plastic or zip-lock bag until the all clear is given.
Patients with medication that requires refrigeration are advised to continue to keep the medication refrigerated.
Persons are advised to monitor the various radio stations or social media for further bulletins issued by NEMO and the Ministry of Health to remain safe and alert.