Office of Disaster Management (ODM), is calling on the Sint Maarten community to begin to prepare timely for the Atlantic hurricane season, and to have the necessary plans in place before the peak of the season (August – October). The hurricane season opens on June 1st.
The first named-storm of the 2016 Atlantic Hurricane season formed in January and was named Alex. The second named storm could form by or over the weekend and will be named Bonnie.
ODM is urging residents to use the next few weeks to prepare yourselves adequately by reviewing your annual hurricane season preparatory list.
ODM adds that the country’s disaster preparedness and emergency management mechanisms will be ready to deal with any eventuality arising during the 2016 Atlantic Hurricane season.
“As we do for every hurricane season, preparing for a storm strike is necessary. Remember it only takes one to make it a bad hurricane season. Every household and business should take the necessary precautions by preparing, because it only takes one hurricane strike to make it a bad season.
“Check your disaster plan and review your disaster supply kit. Prepare early and avoid being caught unprepared. Minimize your dependence on government, family or friends. Preparedness starts with every one of us within our communities,” ODM pointed out.
Some of the preparations that should be carried out now are checking hurricane shutters and the roof of your home or business, and to make sure windows and shutters close securely.
Persons living along coastal areas as well as those in flood prone areas should start looking at what measures they would take in the event of a hurricane which could cause flood challenges.
Mariners who are seeking shelter in the Simpson Bay Lagoon or Oyster Pond should also make plans to stay with friends or at a hotel until the storm has passed rather than staying on the vessel.
The 2016 hurricane season officially runs through November 30.