JIS News

The impact of Hurricane Emily on the parish of Portland over the week-end was minimal, compared to what Hurricane Dennis did to the parish on July 7.
While Dennis caused a fair amount of damage to houses, crops and infrastructure in a number of communities, Emily’s passing was felt with only widespread squally showers and road blockages on the main road in Shirley Castle and Ken Wright Drive in Fairy Hill on Saturday (July 16).
In the case of the Shirley Castle road, the blockage was caused by a landslide, while a fallen light post owned by the Jamaica Public Service Company was responsible for the blockage on Ken Wright Drive. Both roads have since been cleared and are back into full use.
However, as a precautionary measure, a number of persons living in low lying and flood prone areas were evacuated from their homes and taken to emergency shelters to ensure their safety from the effects of the hurricane.
Kimberly Bryan, Co-ordinator for the Portland Disaster Committee, told JIS News that a total of 420 persons were housed in 20 shelters.
She noted that currently there were no emergency shelters operating in the parish, as all persons evacuated for the hurricane had returned to their homes after the threat posed by the storm had passed.
Miss Bryan said the Portland Disaster Committee was prepared to respond to the challenges of the current hurricane season, and appealed to the communities to continue to co-operate with disaster preparedness and mitigation initiatives currently being embarked on in Portland.
She commended the various organizations and individuals who have been working together to promote sustainable development and reduce the incidence of disasters in the parish.