JIS News

Story Highlights

  • As Hurricane Matthew approaches the island, Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Hon. Desmond McKenzie, is appealing for citizens to heed the warnings issued by the authorities.
  • A hurricane watch was issued on Friday, meaning that Jamaica would, in 48 hours, experience dangerously high water or a combination of dangerously high water and exceptionally high waves, even though winds expected may be less than hurricane force.
  • Minister McKenzie said measures have been put in place to respond to “critical communities” during and after the passage of Matthew.

As Hurricane Matthew approaches the island, Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Hon. Desmond McKenzie, is appealing for citizens to heed the warnings issued by the authorities.

He said that while the Government continues to make preparations for the Category Four system, individuals and families need to put their own safety arrangements in place.

“This is not something that people should take for a joke,” he said.

Minister McKenzie was addressing a media briefing at the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM) in New Kingston on Friday (Sept. 30).

He informed that all emergency shelters across the island will come into operation by Saturday afternoon and they will be equipped with the necessary resources.

“We are not going to wait until the last moment to deploy the resources for those operations,” he noted.

All Members of Parliament have been allocated an advance of $1 million from the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) to deal with preparation and response to emergency needs.

He reported that members of faith-based organisations have pledged their support to ensure that homeless persons are taken to shelters.

A hurricane watch was issued on Friday, meaning that Jamaica would, in 48 hours, experience dangerously high water or a combination of dangerously high water and exceptionally high waves, even though winds expected may be less than hurricane force.