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TS Bret

This GeoColor satellite image taken Tuesday, June 20, 2023 and provided by NOAA, shows Tropical Storm Bret as it chugged toward the eastern Caribbean. (NOAA via AP)

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The government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines has ordered that only essential services operate as of 6 p.m. today, as Tropical Storm Bret could impact the country within the next 24 hours. 

Acting Prime Montgomery Daniel announced moments ago that the government has ordered a shutdown of all schools and the Public Service. 

He said a full shutdown, which includes businesses, comes into effect at 6 p.m,” he said on NBC Radio. 

“Only essential services such as police, health services, and utilities will report for work under the instructions of their departments,” Daniel said.

The government has ordered that all emergency shelters be opened and Daniel said that the National Emergency Operations Centre would be fully activated at 6 p.m.

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He said that residents and motorists in areas prone to flooding and landslides or near rivers and streams should be prepared. 

People are asked to stay out of the sea and those living along coastal waters have been advised to take precautions now.

Daniel said fishers should pull boats onto higher grounds.

“As we continue our preparations for the passage to Tropical Storm Bret, I urge all to continue to listen to the updates from the Met Services and all released from NEMO. Do make your final preparations now,” the acting prime minister said.

He said both agencies will continue to monitor the passage of the cyclone. 

“Let us take this seriously and be prepared. A further update can be provided when necessary,” he said.