JIS News

Manchester and St. Elizabeth are preparing for any possible fall out, particularly flooding, that might occur with the passage of Hurricane Ernesto to the north east of the country later today.
As part of the preparations, Emergency Operation Centres are now up and running at two locations in Mandeville, at the chambers of the Manchester Parish Council and over in St. Elizabeth at the Black River Fire Station.
Speaking to JIS News, Acting Secretary/Manager for the Manchester Parish Council, Dave Harris, noted that the major concern at the moment was for persons living in flood prone areas to prepare to evacuate to higher ground in the event of flooding.
“We have been working with our planning department to establish some of the possible scenarios that could occur with a view to the best possible cases of roads being flooded, we have a number of alternative routes that we will announce should the situation warrant,” he said.
Mr. Harris said that persons who needed to know what to do should flooding occur, can contact the Council at 962-2278-9, 962-0612, 961-6316 or 961-6328.
“Some of the problem spots, based on what has happened in the past, are Auchtembeddie, Alligator Pond, Porus, Williamsfield, Watson Hill, Hudson Bottom, along the Guts River main road and certain sections of the north east, such as Christiana,” he indicated.
Mr. Harris pointed out that so far, the local parish councillors have been out in the field sensitising persons about the need to be proactive.
On the matter of shelters, Mr. Harris pointed out that most were in a satisfactory state, with the shelter managers prepared to go into action.
“I am encouraging those who might be going to these facilities to ensure that they bring along certain basic supplies, such as a blanket, some food, and essential medication,” he said.
Over in St. Elizabeth, Disaster Co-ordinator, Yvonne Morrison told JIS News that, “our main concern is not so much the wind factor, given the projected path, but the possibility of some areas that are just recovering from recent floods, being devastated again.I speak of Great Bay, Treasure Beach, New Holland, Maggoty, New River, Big Woods and some sections of Santa Cruz”, she said.
Miss Morrison pointed out that persons from all the relevant agencies attached to the emergency operations centre had reported for duty.
She said that persons in need of assistance could call the 119 emergency number or 846-4959.

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